The editors-in-chief of both Wired and Quartz have, coincidentally, announced on the same day that they are stepping down from their positions.
Gideon Lichfield, the global editorial director of Wired, said on Wednesday that he will stay in place until September “unless a new editor is ready to start sooner”.
Zach Seward, of Quartz, will serve his last day on Friday 9 June as his parental leave ends.
Lichfield, himself formerly a global news and then senior editor at Quartz, has led Condé Nast‘s technology magazine since March 2021. He told staff in a note: “I want to begin focusing more of my energies on a question that many of you know is important to me, and that I think is becoming increasingly urgent: how societies can govern themselves peaceably and for the common good in an era of accelerating technological change, rising geopolitical uncertainty and intensifying climate crisis.
“I am still figuring out what it will mean in practice for me to work on this, but I know at least some of it probably involves committing acts of journalism with my own two hands, a thing I’ve increasingly missed doing.”
Lichfield said he would remain involved with the Wired podcast Have A Nice Future “at least” until November.
Seward, meanwhile, was not only Quartz’s editor-in-chief but one of its co-founders, serving variously since 2012 as executive editor, chief product officer and chief executive editor.
He wrote on his website that “I’d like to use the next few months for a mix of personal and professional projects, while figuring out what’s next”.
Of his time at Quartz, Seward recalled: “Every big hit that has emerged from our newsroom was the result of someone questioning prior assumptions, pushing back (usually against their boss), and challenging us to do something better. As the boss in many of those cases, it could be very annoying! But my original ideas for the Obsession email and the chat app were shit, actually, and it required trust for others to tell me. And then it took permission for them to go off and return with something much better.”
[Read more: Quartz founder Zach Seward says being part of G/O Media will let it focus on the journalism]
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