Quartz Grabs Veteran New York Times Video Journalist Erik Olsen

The L.A. native starts Monday on the West Coast.

The Quartz Los Angeles reporting team is small. At the moment, there is no office and the staff is made up of just two full-time journalists: David Yanofsky and Corinne Purtill.

Next Monday, those two will welcome a third L.A. team member. Erik Olsen is coming on board as Quartz’s West Coast video correspondent. On the video end, he is the seventh member of that group. Here’s the memo from editor in chief Kevin Delaney:

I’m happy to announce that Erik Olsen joins Quartz on Monday as our west coast video correspondent, based in Los Angeles.

Erik comes to us from the New York Times, where he spent more than a decade as senior video journalist, most recently based in Berlin. He has shot, written, edited and narrated a vast range of stories from breaking news and scoops to documentary-length features.

At Quartz, Erik will join our video team in pursuing their mandate to produce smart, creative video without undue deference to the existing formats and conventions of the medium. His efforts will build on their success — since the middle of last year, the videos that team has produced have already been viewed more than 100 million times.

During his two years in Europe, Erik covered nearly every major story on the continent, from the conflict in Ukraine to the refugee crisis and the anti-immigration movement in Germany. He’s a skilled multimedia reporter who wrote articles and shot photos for the paper as he produced videos. His main obsessions are science and the sea.

A Los Angeles native, Erik has interned at Apple, cut his teeth as a local newspaper reporter, run a popular blog about travel (when they were called Weblogs!), and produced for ABC News and Current. He has lived in Thailand, Chile and Spain and traveled to 30 more countries in the course of his work. Erik is an adventurer in the best sense of the word. He kayaks, scuba dives, skis, and once took a 10,000 mile trip by land and sea from Antarctica to Los Angeles. Lately, he has become a drone pilot.

Erik has a master’s in environmental management from the University of Washington, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado in modern European history. He speaks Spanish and German. You can follow him on Twitter @olsentropy.

Please join me in welcoming him.

The video above, by the way, is currently Quartz’s most viewed. Not that you would know that from YouTube. To the roughly one million views there, add another 23 million plus from the Facebook end.

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