Tyee named one of B.C.'s most innovative companies

ShareThisB.C.-based online magazine The Tyee made it on a recent list of the province's top ten most innovative companies.

BCBusiness magazine placed the five year-old online publication at number nine on its list this year, alongside yoga wear giant Lululemon and credit union VanCity.

The mag noted:

"With its tight regional focus and growing B.C. readership (up 77 per cent in the past two years to about 175,000 unique visitors a month), The Tyee has quickly become an influential media voice."

But Mary Lynn Young, director of the University of British Columbia's Graduate school of Journalism told BCBusiness that the Tyee's real innovation is the diversity of its donors. The story states:

"In the U.S., she observes, there are several philanthropy-funded news organizations that have started up in recent years, including the ProPublic.org site from former Wall Street Journal managing editor Paul Steiger. But in Canada, Beers has been ahead of the curve. The Tyee, which launched in November 2003 with $190,000 from the B.C. Federation of Labour and the labour-affiliated Working Enterprises Group, has broadened its funding base to include a variety of non-labour angel investors (such as medical software developer Eric Peterson), foundations and readers (who raised $50,000 in two separate journalism fellowship drives), as well as a modest amount of advertising revenue (now 20 per cent of The Tyee’s $600,000 annual budget)."

Young concludes:

“In Canada The Tyee is at the cutting edge. As the mainstream media changes and has less money for quality journalism, people like Dave and The Tyee can really fill a niche and solve a problem. They’ll only have the opportunity to grow."

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