The Colorado Sun Officially Launches In An Uncertain Time For News Media

Sep 10, 2018

The Colorado Sun has officially launched itself onto the Colorado's media landscape. The online news outlet, made up of former Denver Post editors and reporters , is focused on in-depth reporting, politics and watchdog journalism.

KUNC's Kyra Buckley spoke with Larry Ryckman, the Colorado Sun's co-founding editor and former editor at The Denver Post.

Interview Highlights

Kyra Buckley, KUNC: What can readers expect from the Colorado Sun that's different from what you can already find online?

Larry Ryckman, Colorado Sun: We're going to do the kinds of deep, investigative, watchdog, explanatory and long-form narrative that is just very difficult for others to produce anymore with cut backs. We have a great team assembled at the Colorado Sun. We're so excited to begin sharing the work we're doing for the people of this state.

Credit Courtesy of Larry Ryckman

Buckley: The Colorado Sun receives funding from Civil, which is a blockchain venture capital. We've done a little bit of reporting on this blockchain model , and I still find it kind of confusing. I'm wondering if you're concerned that readers might not understand the funding model.

Ryckman: There's a lot of confusion around blockchain in general. It's a new thing - but I'm old enough to remember there was confusion about the internet when it came out, too. What readers need to know is that they can go to coloradosun.com and find great material. If readers like what they see and want to support us, we are happy to take good old American dollars via credit cards, and in some cases we had people sending us paper checks. There's really no need for you to have any knowledge at all about blockchain or crypto economics.

Buckley: We've seen a number of online news outlets that have launched in the wake of some of the major papers shrinking and it has been to varying degrees of success. The Voice of San Diego has been around since 2005, but then the Saint Louis Beacon ended up merging with the local public radio station . Some folks here in Colorado might remember The Rocky Mountain Independent that folded in 2009. I'm wondering what you're sustainability plan is for this new adventure?

Ryckman: It's risky starting up any new business, whether you're opening up a taco truck in downtown Denver or creating a news organization. It's risky to start something new, but we are confident we have sufficient financial backing, and we've just been blown away by the enthusiasm of from the people of Colorado.

We we set up a Kickstarter fundraising campaign and we set a goal of raising $75,000 over the course of a month. We blew through that in three days, and the the money continues to roll in.

In terms of sustainability, of course that's a concern for us, as it should be for anyone, and we believe we have sufficient financial resources to make our case to the people of Colorado - at least over the next couple of years, and probably beyond - and to give us a fighting chance.