Report: Ezra Klein to Leave WaPo After Jeff Bezos Kills $10M Dream Project
by Warner Todd Huston 2 Jan 2014, 8:34 PM PDT
As new owner Jeff Bezos begins his tenure as the head man for the Washington Post, Wonkblog editor Ezra Klein is reportedly making plans to exit the paper after being denied funding for a pet project.
Klein built a media presence on the Internet, newspapers, and TV as a "wonk" at a young age. Now, he apparently wants to expand his reach in the media with an extensive new website that he wanted the Washington Post to fund.
As described by The New York Times, the project would be a "a new website dedicated to explanatory journalism on a wide range of topics beyond political policy."
After presenting his plan to the Post's publisher Katharine Weymouth and editor Marty Baron, the major website project—costing eight figures, according to the Times' sources—was rejected by Weymouth and the paper's new owner, Jeff Bezos.
Since Bezos, a major Internet innovator as founder of Amazon.com, passed on the project, Klein has reportedly been attempting to sell the idea to others and may exit the paper over the snub.
The Times reports that the "atmosphere is civilized" inside the Post but that relations between Klein and his bosses has resulted in some "awkwardness" between them.
Bezos became the official owner of the Post at the beginning of October 2013. Klein may have felt inspired to move forward with his project after Guardian blogger Glenn Greenwald announced a $250 million journalistic venture funded by Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay, in December.