‘The New Republic’ Loves Long Reads

Owner Chris Hughes steps up involvement at magazine

The New Republic has introduced a new feature on its site, a small addition but one that underscores Chris Hughes’ stated interest in long-form journalism and the active role he’ll be playing at the magazine. The section, TNR Reader, is a simple compilation of a few staff-chosen long reads from around the Web, less an aggregator than a collection of links.

Hughes, the Facebook co-founder who bought TNR in March and who took the title of editor in chief as well as publisher, said he came up with the idea for TNR Reader when he noticed staffers were recommending links to each other anyway. “People were sending around great pieces they were reading all day,” said Hughes, who, by the way, thinks the result is "pretty cool." “I thought somebody might be interested in it.”

The usual purveyors of long reads, like The Atlantic, The New Yorker and Slate, are well represented in the links, but not overly so; other, more niche sources cited include Threepenny Review, American Poetry Review and American Scientist. In addition to the length of each article, TNR tells you how long each article should take to read.

Shortly after buying TNR, Hughes lowered the paywall on the site in hopes of attracting more potential subscribers; presumably, the TNR Reader will give people one more reason to visit the site. Hughes also said he plans to expand the staff and is opening a New York office that will house business and editorial staffers, although the magazine will remain based in D.C.