Splinter Editor-in-Chief Dodai Stewart spoke to Poynter about the site’s rebrand, including whether any other publications helped inspire Splinter.
You hear sometimes about how different editors, when they’re creating new publications, have other publications in mind that they’re trying to draw some inspiration from. When you were going over this rebrand, did you have any outlets or publications in mind?
Honestly, no. Because there is no other publication like this. I have never worked at a place like this where the inclusivity has been baked in from the beginning and where the entire purpose is to include underrepresented voices. I think that’s part of what’s so exciting about having the new name. It really does feel like this mission is unique to us. Our cabinet members are unlike some other publications in the sense that they’re diverse.
An example of that inclusivity in action was an excruciating report last week on how the system failed a poor, black, trans teen: ‘I Am a Girl Now,’ Sage Smith Wrote. Then She Went Missing.
The reporter, Emma Eisenberg, wrote on Facebook that she pitched the story to over 20 outlets, all of whom passed. It reinforced both the reality that there is likely an industry-wide internalized bias against stories about marginalized people and the very reason a site like Splinter exists.
Check out Dodai’s full Q&A with Poynter below: