Very little apparently.
Freed was announced as an online revolution in new media in the middle of last year (July). Cameron Slater at Whale Oil promoted it frequently and loudly. Initially. An imminent launch was intimated on NBR and Whale Oil – Cameron Slater’s next media venture:
[Cameron Slater] will start a news website before this year’s general election.
Mr Slater will not confirm Mr Lentino’s involvement but says one private investor has contributed a six-figure sum for the site.
Last October Slater quoted Martyn Bradbury…
With Slater about to launch next year a new weaponised news media ‘Freed.co.nz’ complete with a drone operator, he will bend and push the boundaries of attack blogs into a whole new realm of horror. How will the left blogosphere compete with a $600,000 right wing attack blog is yet to be seen.
$600,000? That isn’t even 7 figures…WRONG again.
But things have gradually gone quiet. The Freed website was last updated in January:
They’re not live yet. On Facebook they had a flurry of activity in late January:
Nothing since February 2. Twitter is very similar with the same content as Facebook.
Cameron Slater frequently promoted Freed, and this was often associated with criticism of old media, especially his nemisis NZ Herald. In this slam of the Herald on March 22 – WHO ARE THE HERALD WRITING FOR, EXACTLY? - he didn’t mentioned Freed but was asked about it in comments.
On March 15 ‘Spanish Bride (Slater’s wife) made a comment about “Freed on the horizon”:
The last Slater post to mention Freed was over a month ago (February 24) with a passing mention at the end of DID ALISTAIR THOMPSON RIP OFF SELWYN PELLETT TO THE TUNE OF $250K:
As tempting as it is to gloat over their misfortune, we all want online news to be a success. But if Scoop’s old model sucked and was a failure, does that suggest a better way is out there, with people waiting to be Freed from the appalling tactics of established paper based press and unethical people such as Alistair Thompson?
There’s been occasional comments from the fan club in comments included queries about when Freed will be launched but they usually go unanswered.
A search back to December 6 reveals a bit more from Slater in DOMINION POST POLITICAL EDITOR TRACY WATKINS FLAILS ABOUT WILDLY FOR RELEVANCE
My brand is so repugnant that I continue to build an ever-increasing audience. But hey, don’t let facts get in thew way of trying to damage Freed by association.
The Dominion Post reaches nearly half of Wellingtonians aged 15 years and over and has an average daily readership of 234,000 people aged over 15.
I just have a little old repugnant blog with a similar following Tracy. Wait until we start Freed!
I have something on most people Tracy. The thing is, your colleagues used to quite enjoy it when they phoned me to ask what the ‘latest’ was, and were quite happy to use my “repugnant brand” for their own purposes. Now that Freed is on the way, I am a threat to media and must be dealt to.
That’s nearly four months ago. And he last post that seems designed to be a promotion of Freed was October 24 – 5 THINGS ABOUT THE US MEDIA THAT THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO KNOW AND NZ MEDIA ARE SIMILARLY IN TROUBLE:
I think in New Zealand this number probably isn’t quite that bad. But the trend is there. Time for Freed.
Those are fascinating numbers. It means that the news media are disconnected from their audience. Time for Freed.
Journalists have been speculating about Freed being New Zealand’s “Fox News” in a pejorative sense. The problem for them is that the public don’t share the joke. Time for Freed.
People are begging for reporting. Real reporting. And they still want opinion too. They just don’t want it mixed up. They don’t want journos that are bigger than the story. They don’t want the opinion to be more important than the facts. They want to be Freed.
Blogs like Whaleoil fill a gap. But what is still missing is a place where people can get the news. They don’t actually feel they can get the news. They want to be Freed.
Those links all point to the now stagnant FREED.NZ website (see above).
So promotion of and comments about Freed seem to be fizzling out. Time will tell whether the project is fizzling or they are keeping things under wraps until a big launch. Sometime. Maybe.
Slater’s main project so far this year seems to have been his boxing “journey” which ended up flat on the canvas.
Is that where Freed is headed, before even making it into the media ring?
For more details further back see my January post Freed from what?