Jeff Vance founded Startup50 in 2013 as a site that would focus on the substance behind the hype. The idea was to come up with a process, one featuring rigorous competitions and challenges, that would strip away the spin and force startups to focus on what really matters: real people and the real-world problems they’re struggling to overcome.
But over the last several years, journalism has taken a turn for the worst. After watching publication after publication either downsize or collapse, after seeing experienced writers and editors kicked to the streets in favor of low-cost writers who can barely spell, and after watching in horror as real journalism was replaced by listicles, content boiler rooms, and thinly veiled pay-for-play cheerleading, Jeff started looking for new ways to deliver his stories to readers.
Writing for third-party publications just wasn’t cutting it any longer. Sensing that the chaos in the publishing world was just going to get worse, Jeff launched Startup50 as a platform where he could experiment with new ways to create and monetize journalism.
The experiment is ongoing.
Before Startup50, Jeff also founded Sandstorm Media, a copywriting and content marketing firm. He previously served as Head of Marketing Strategy for Aryaka, an SD-WAN startup, taught creative nonfiction at New Mexico State University, and during the dotcom bubble, he was editor of Telecom Trends and Mobile Internet Times.