State of Digital Publishing has learned viral “good news” site Upworthy and media company Good Worldwide will merge in an attempt to more effectively promote their feel-good, cause-based content. The merger was announced on Friday, but financial terms weren’t disclosed. In an ironic twist, 20 employees from the two companies were given the bad news they were being laid off because of the upcoming merger.
Is a good news merger a good thing?
According to Upworthy’s VP of marketing, Jennifer Lindenauer, success for both companies is the main objective, despite the downsizing.
Hopefully, the company consolidation will serve to reach a wider user base and negate the overwhelming presence of distressing online news. As multiple outlets reported back in 2014, reading bad news can have a negative impact on your health.
Both Good and Upworthy focus on releasing videos and news articles that are uplifting, with the end goal of creating a kinder, gentler society. When we read news that makes us feel happy, “feel good” chemicals are released by the brain, which have a positive effect on the body — and that’s definitely something to smile about.
Cross-promotion and shared space
Also merging are the two companies’ newsrooms; the shared space will encompass video production, content creation and design. Upworthy will remain its “own brand” under Good Worldwide, and cross-promotion will take place between Upworthy.com and Good’s site, good.is, in an attempt to garner greater traffic and engagement for both.
Coming onboard Good Worldwide as president is Eli Pariser, cofounder and co-CEO of Upworthy. Another Upworthy cofounder, Peter Koechley, will stay on as a consultant and advisor but won’t be participating in daily company activities.
Looking to the future
Whether the merger will have a favorable effect on the landscape of the “good-news Net” remains to be seen. In addition to its site, Good Worldwide helms a consultancy group for brands advocating positive social agendas, which is similar to Upworthy’s brand-centric content creation studio. While we at SoDP can’t speculate on the potential success or failure of the merger, what we do know is that there’s always room for more good news on the internet.
What do you think about the Good Worldwide/Upworthy merger?