NBC News Digital Names Yahoo’s Hillary Frey as Editorial Director

NBCNews.com to boost original content

Headshot of Emma Bazilian

NBCNews.com has made nearly a dozen new hires to bolster the news site, including Yahoo News editor in chief (and former Adweek managing editor) Hillary Frey as editorial director, The Wall Street Journal reported today.

NBCNews.com, which was created nine months ago when NBC ended its partnership with Microsoft, is seeking to differentiate itself from the old MSNBC.com by producing more original content and investigative stories and lessening its reliance on wire copy and partner content, executive editor Gregory Gittrich told the Journal. (He added that, in some cases, NBCNews.com has banned using wire stories entirely.) NBC News Digital is also planning to open new bureaus in Seattle, London and Washington, D.C.

In addition to Frey, NBC News has made about a dozen other hires to bolster its growing digital news organization, which will eventually have an editorial staff of about 75 people, according to the Journal. New hires include Danielle Friedman, the former director of Beast TV and special editorial products at Newsweek and The Daily Beast; New York Daily News editor and reporter Tracy Connor; and Associated Press editor Erin McClam.

Under Frey's editorship, the Yahoo-ABC News Network ranked as the most popular news site in 2012, according to comScore, with an average 86 million monthly unique visitors. NBC News came in fourth, also trailing CNN and the Huffington Post, with 56.3 million average unique visitors per month.

@adweekemma emma.bazilian@adweek.com Emma Bazilian is Adweek's features editor.