While other media companies continue their video pivots, Gizmodo Media Group has launched a new media brand that, thankfully, is a predominately text-based site. Dubbed Earther, the new site will be environmentally focused and, according to GMG, chronicle three main topics: “The future of Earth,” “The future of humans on Earth,” and “The future of life on Earth.” So pretty much the site will feature stories about how we’re all screwed. A few former Gizmodo and Fusion employees will be leading the editorial team.
This is the first step for the Gizmodo/Fusion suite of media brands to try and reclaim their past glory. After Gawker Media filed for bankruptcy last year, all of its sites, sans Gawker, were bought and rolled into its new parent company. Then came confusion with the Fusion site, which was once affiliated with Fusion TV but tried to become something more. Now the dust is settling after all the corporate mishmashings: Gizmodo Media Group has been folded into another umbrella called Fusion Media Group, all of which are owned by Univision. (To understand the structure, it’s best to draw a tree.) Meanwhile, Fusion underwent a significant change in editorial focus and has rebranded as Splinter.
Over the last year, the many sites have been trying to work together under one Univision corporate overlord, attempting to figure out how a handful of individual media sites can maintain their unique editorial voices while fitting together under the new banner. Since then, GMG brands including Kotaku, Deadspin, Lifehacker, and The Root have launched new sub-sites. Earther, however, is the first stand-alone destination launched since all of the mergers, reconfigurations, and rebranding.
In a sense, this is Gizmodo’s way of trying to prove itself as as a worthy competitor to the likes of BuzzFeed and Vox. When you put all of these sites together, Fusion Media Group’s reach is nothing to sneeze at. All combined–which includes all of the old Gizmodo sites, in addition to Fusion, The Onion, Clickhole, and The Root–the media group sees more than 100 million uniques every month, according to comScore. Still, given the tumultuous last few years that both Gizmodo and Fusion have seen, there’s a long road ahead.
So I guess, in keeping with old, worn-out media jokes, we could say “Congrats to Earther on its job at Fusion.” Or maybe it’s Gizmodo? Either way, the new site is taking it to Kinja.