National Journal‘s “The Hotline” went under the knife this week for a makeover. In journalistic terms this means an “upgrade” and “redesign.” The upside: The bandages are off and Hotline gets a new look, a user-friendly interface and “powerful” political tracking tools. The downside: Some employees lost their jobs in the process. How many is unclear. We know at least two names of Hotline employees — Chris Peleo-Lazar and Dan Roem — who had their duties eliminated.
“Fun fact, it’s Dan Roem and my last day at NJ’s Hotline. Loved working here but alas they’re moving to a new system,” Peleo-Lazar wrote FBDC. “Don’t know what’s next. I don’t know exact details of the new thing but they are ending my section entirely.”
NJ Publicist Ben Fishel told FishbowlDC: “A few jobs were eliminated and two people were reassigned to other positions at NJ.” He declined to offer specifics on exactly how many jobs were eliminated.
The new “Hotline”… is in partnership with the relatively new OhMyGov, a media monitoring and political analysis research firm that was founded in 2009. According to their website, the company’s analytics, insights, and executives have been utilized in various news publications, including CNN, Newsweek, ABC News, Politico, U.S. News & World Report, The Hill, and National Journal.
On the newly designed site is an explanation for the makeover. “For a quarter century, Hotline has brought you campaigns and elections coverage from around the country,” writes The Hotline’s Editor-in-Chief Reid Wilson in a note on the newly designed site. “We were faxing before faxing was cool, and we were emailing back in the age of AOL and CompuServe. Now, we’re evolving again, in an effort to deliver the news you need faster and more efficiently.”
The new features include “sortable news monitoring” and aggregation for each political race and candidate as well as social media tracking and ranking. Later this year, subscribers will get aggregated polling data on every national race and campaign financial disclosures along with a “dashboard” of national political races.