Medium’s Mike Sall on metrics that matter, Medium’s focus and where the industry is headed


Michael Sall graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2009 with a double major in Finance and History of Art. From there, Sall has worked in many arenas. He began as a Business Analyst at Deloitte Consulting immediately after graduation, where he worked for just under two years. After this time, he was a Growth Analyst at TypeKit, a service which allows its users the ability to embed fonts into their documents.

In October 2011, Adobe ended up purchasing Typekit. Sall then became the product manager at Adobe for both TypeKit and Adobe Creative Cloud, where he stayed until March 2013. Six months later, he became a Product Scientist at Medium. Medium is a blog-publishing platform that was founded by the co-founders of Twitter in another form of social journalism. Their goal is to connect users through stories that stretch longer than the 140 character restraint that Twitter has. This was created in a hope of raising the quality of the news and stories that are shared.

Sall worked as a Product Scientist for Medium for a year before this past September, where he became the head of Product Science for Medium. He works primarily on user engagement, which Medium measures in terms of time spent reading. This line of thinking is unorthodox for many other social networks, but Medium has fully embraced this as the primary metric in a world of shortened attention spans and quick clicking.

Matthew Winkler, Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief, on the Most Pressing Issues in Business Journalism Today

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Matthew Winkler
Few people in journalism today can claim the reputation of Matthew Winkler, the long-time, bow-tied editor-in-chief of Bloomberg News.
A Kenyon College graduate who kicked off his career at the Ohio-based Mount Vernon News, Winkler spent 10 years as a financial reporter for The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s and Dow Jones before co-founding Bloomberg News with the service’s namesake, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in 1990. From 1991 until 1994 he was also a markets columnist for Forbes. Winkler has penned two books, The Bloomberg Way: A Guide for Reporters and Editors, and Bloomberg by Bloomberg, which he co-authored.

Under the stewardship of Winkler, Bloomberg News has been nominated for two Pulitzer Prizes and has won more than 500 awards, according to his bio on the Bloomberg website. This includes the George Polk, Gerald Loeb, Investigative Reports & Editors and Society of Professional Journalists awards. Winkler himself is the recipient of the 2007 Gerald Loeb Foundation Lifetime achievement award.

But Bloomberg has not been immune to the changes many mainstream news organizations have been grappling with in recent years: In November the company laid off around 40 journalists across multiple departments, while also planning the expansion of coverage in emerging markets. Just prior to the layoffs, Bloomberg News and Winkler in particular were questioned by other media outlets over the company’s coverage policies in China.

Winkler joins us at Stanford University on Wednesday, February 5 at 12:15 pm PT to discuss the changing face of business journalism and the most pressing issues in the sector today.