Sep 18, 2023 - Economy

Exclusive: Time doubles down on Opinion content

Laurene Powell Jobs and Jess Sibley speak onstage at the 2023 TIME100 Summit on April 25 in New York City. Photo: Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Time on Monday announced a new editorial platform called Time100 Voices that is dedicated to elevating perspectives from global thought leaders.

Why it matters: The new vertical marries two of Time’s most successful franchises: Time Ideas, its opinion section, and Time100, its popular events and editorial platform.

  • Time Ideas is one of the company's most-read verticals, Time editor-in-chief Sam Jacobs told Axios.
  • TIME100 "is one of the largest global communities of leaders and thought leaders in the world today," said Time CEO Jessica Sibley.

Details: The new TIME100 Voices platform will highlight ideas and perspectives of global leaders from the TIME100 community in a new section on Time's website.

  • TIME100 has spotlighted the world's most influential people annually since 1999. It's since expanded to include events and an offshoot list called TIME100 Next that highlights emerging thought leaders, TIME100 Most Influential Companies and TIME100 AI.
  • The new TIME100 Voices section will feature opinion pieces, essays and book excerpts from people who have been highlighted in any of the various Time100 lists.
  • The company plans to double the overall amount of content and coverage within Time Ideas in the next six months, a spokesperson said. The section currently publishes around 70 pieces per month.
  • The section on launched Monday with opinion pieces from Oprah Winfrey, José Andrés, Richard Branson and others.

Zoom in: The company will launch a new weekly newsletter called Time POV that will highlight the most provocative and interesting pieces from the company's TIME Ideas and TIME100 Voices sections.

  • In addition to the email, it will also launch a new history vertical under TIME Ideas that will offer analysis of U.S. current events and public debates, beginning Sept. 27.
  • The vertical will launch in partnership with Made by History, a history blog formerly created in partnership with the Washington Post. (It announced it was leaving the Post in July.)
  • Time100 Voices will be led by Time senior editor Lucy Feldman, in conjunction with Time Ideas editorial director Lucas Wittmann and senior executive editor Kelly Conniff.

The big picture: Opinion sections became more controversial during the Trump era, as newsrooms often found themselves at odds over positions taken by their editorial boards.

  • Time100 Voices aims to skirt some of that tension by focusing less on niche political opinions and more on highlighting perspectives from world leaders on broader issues that impact humanity, such as health, artificial intelligence and climate change.
  • "We think that TIME can help to decrease polarization by being a publication that connects with readers around the world," Jacobs said, noting that 40% of Time's audience is outside the U.S. and 45% are readers under the age of 35.

What to watch: As more brands face pressure to take a stance on issues, Sibley sees the expansion of Time's perspective content through TIME100 Voices as "offering new opportunities to attract commercial partners," she said.

  • Brands and partners, she noted, "want to align with exactly the kind of content that T100 Voices intends to be a home for."
  • Much of the content featured on TIME100 Voices will come from people who already frequent Time's stages. Bringing their insights to the new section could help the company reach new global audiences and attract new readers to, Sibley said.
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