Ken Lerer’s New Animal Website, Led by His Daughter Isabel, Will Be Very Philosophical


The Lerer’s are officially the Royal Family of New Media. Ken Lerer, the Patriarch, is a co-founder of The Huffington Post, BuzzFeed and other enemies of old-fashioned journalism, and a Managing Director of Lerer Ventures. Ben Lerer is the fratty Prodigal Son who eventually did right for himself as a co-founder of Thrillist.

And now, Isabel Lerer — about to enter her sixth and final year of a Philosophy PhD program at Columbia — will be joining the family business as a leader of The Dodo, a new web property focused on animals, according to TechCrunch.

Yes, it’s pretty shameless nepotism, but Isabel seems as good a fit as any millenial to curate an animal publication; she writes on Columbia’s website that, “I have a special interest in what I take to be complex moral questions raised by the portrayal of animals in art and literature.”

And who said philosophy majors couldn’t land jobs!

Also joining the venture as CEO will be Kerry Lauerman, who left his post as EIC of Salon in June. Lerer acknowledged that a mix of high-low content will be crucial to The Dodo’s business model, much as in BuzzFeed and The Huffington Post. He believes that animal rights and sustainability content “is on the cusp of exploding,” and who am I to argue — I’m just as entranced by this spotted micropig in a bathtub as everyone else.