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Master Theory is building a journalism company outside of the media monoculture for the post-gatekeeper generation.

 

And it starts in Austin.

As our eyes and ears, journalists possess enormous influence over how we perceive our world.

 

Today most Americans believe the news media is dividing the country. That's not only bad for the republic, it's making us individually miserable and collectively distrustful of one another.

The mission of Master Theory in a post-gatekeeper era must be about more than pursuing selective truths but accurately depicting reality through intellectual curiosity, courage and humility.

We believe journalists have a distinct responsibility to leave our culture better than we now find it.

Viewpoint diversity

Master Theory believes the truth emerges within environments that are conducive to more intellectual diversity and a commitment to facts - including the hard ones. That means expanding the narrow set of viewpoints  present in the media monoculture and challenging simplistic narratives that are both unrepresentative of the public and impediments to the truth and a better informed public.

Community

Through forums, interviews, recordings and other events, we believe journalists as influencers of public perception have a responsibility to be present and engage with people in-person as often as possible.

Progress

The media has a negativity bias that often ignores or suppresses stories of progress. We want to correct that especially during the current era of enormous accomplishment and potential.

Influence

The editorial modus operandi in journalism is a critical interpretation of power that often divides people into good and bad groups. Rather, Master Theory uses a five-part Influence model that challenges us to confront the nuances and paradoxes of the real world in an approachable way.

Multiculture 

The United States is not just one place, it's many places inhabited by people of subcultures that are rarely if ever included in what is popularly designated as American culture. We'll confront media stereotypes about Americans and explore the ideas, traditions and lifestyles of people living outside of how culture is often conceived.

Texas

 

Austin sits at one of the most vibrant cultural, geographic, academic and lifestyle intersections in the country. The city is nestled in a wider region

that is more representative of the communities most Americans spend their time and will be indispensible in accurately portraying Texans and Americans generally.

THE STATE OF THE MEDIA

How did things get so bad?

 

A key reason is the tragic ongoing decline of local news. The public has long trusted local news over any other source. But over the past two decades, local newspapers across the country have shuttered at the expense of a few national digital media companies detached from where Americans spend their time. That detachment holds those companies less accountable to reflecting the truth on the ground. Communities that lost valuable local news sources had little choice than to turn to national digital and cable news whose earnings are precisely derived from appealing to our worst selves. If it feels like all news is opinion nowadays, that's because it's cheaper for media companies to a hire a pundit to talk than it is to pay journalists to report. The result is a politically polarized media landscape that often caricatures our neighbors, reinforces group stereotypes, oversimplifies complex issues and is less reflective of Americans in real life.

THE MASTER THEORY CURATION

Currently, Master Theory produces a weekly newsletter of outstanding curated journalism. At $5 per month subscribers enjoy articles and essays that often go overlooked in the mainstream press. Subscribers will also get an idea of Master Theory's editorial interests and assist in funding our future launch.

"A unique collection of writing and

reporting I feel like I never get to see in my social feed."

-John H.

"Like a killer weekly playlist of stories, not to mention I sound smarter at parties."

-Mary S.

"Paying for a quality newsletter for me is well worth the price over being inundated with a paralyzing amount of clickbait"

-James F.