by Chuck Colbert
The editor in chief of The Bilerico Project has stepped down.
Writing on the popular blog on May 5, John Becker said, “I’m incredibly grateful to my dear friends Bil Browning [Bilerico co-founder and publisher] and Jerame Davis for giving me the opportunity to take the reins at Bilerico. It’s been an amazing ride — we’ve gone from the East Room of the White House to the Values Voter Summit, and the embassy of Brunei to the U.S. Supreme Court, all while providing daily breaking LGBT news and long-form analysis from across the country and around the world.”
But as Becker explained, “The reason I’m stepping down is simple: money. Running Bilerico is a full-time job — you’re basically on-call 24/7 — but without the pay to match. During my time as editor, I’m proud to say that we increased traffic, reader engagement and social media reach. My work has largely been a labor of love and while it’s been an amazing ride, it’s just not sustainable. I’m stepping away in order to focus on finding a new job.”
News of Becker’s departure comes nine months after he had sounded a warning bell, asking readers and fans for financial support in a fundraising appeal.
A more recent appeal asked 50 of Bilerico’s most dedicated fans to give $5 a month for a year. So far, 15 readers have agreed. Thanks to other readers, the site has raised over $800 in one-time donations.
Earlier this year, Bilerico archives became part of a Smithsonian collection.
The Bilerico Project (www.bilerico.com
) celebrated its 10th anniversary last September. The name Bilerico is a combination of its founder’s first name (Bil) and the first name of Browning’s college friend, Eric Muramatsu.
In addition to his editorial position at Bilerico, Becker has appeared as a guest commentator on major news and political shows, including ABC’s World News Tonight, Nightline, and Good Morning America; NBC’s Today Show; CNN’s Newsroom; Fox’s Alan Colmes Show; MSNBC’s Ed Schultz Show and Live with Al Sharpton; and the Associated Press Television Network. A native of Wisconsin, Becker is also an accomplished classical musician. He holds a master of music degree in vocal performance.
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