Electronic Content Exchange Ebyline Debuts

EbylineLogo.jpgEbyline threw its hat into the content-exchange ring, launching its electronic marketplace Thursday with stories by credentialed freelancers via newspaper-veteran co-op The Journalism Shop and partners including Variety, ProPublica, MinnPost.com, and The Texas Observer.

Stories are priced from $25-$300, and publishers and freelancers (professional journalists only) can use Ebyline’s Freelance Administration tool to manage pitches and assignment work flow; archives drafts and editor feedback; and automatically submit final articles into publishers’ content-management systems.

Ebyline handles all payment processing, including 1099 tax forms, for buyers and sellers via a secure platform. As soon as an editor clicks to accept a submitted article, payment is automatically transferred to the journalist.

Los Angeles-based angel investors provided the initial round of funding for Ebyline, and its advisory board includes: Jeff Johnson, former publisher and CEO of the Los Angeles Times; Leo Wolinsky, editor of Daily Variety and former managing editor of the Los Angeles Times; Bob Bellack, founder of Classified Ventures and former president of Los Angeles Times Digital; Robert Wallace, president of Wallace Media and former vice president of original entertainment for ESPN, executive editor of Rolling Stone, and Emmy Award-winning producer at ABC News; and Lance Sanders, founder of Faketown.com and former NASA engineer.

Ebyline co-founder Bill Momary said:

We’re dedicated to the proliferation of quality journalism in its purest form, as the first service to embrace a revenue model based around the exchange of news. News outlets and freelancers need an economic model for the digital age, and Ebyline is it — this truly is “entrepreneurial journalism” in action. We come from a newspaper background, and we’re committed to helping traditional news organizations and journalists do business with each other in real-time in a marketplace that ultimately elevates the level of competition to reward quality.

Co-founder Allen Narcisse added:

Before Ebyline, the average cost for a major metropolitan newspaper to process one invoice for one freelancer for one story was about $8. That adds up to hundreds of thousands of dollars for big dailies, which often work with thousands of freelancers over the course of a year. Ebyline streamlines that entire process to create a much leaner newsroom, significantly reducing costs and freeing up budget for the actual process of newsgathering. We developed Ebyline to work with a variety of business models. Whether print, digital-only, or nonprofit, our solution helps any organization save money, save time, and maintain high-quality journalism.