Adrian Holovaty’s EveryBlock, which is based in Chicago and runs so-called “hyperlocal” or “microlocal” news sites in several cities, has been purchased by MSNBC for an undisclosed price. EveryBlock provides hyperlocal news in Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Philadelphia, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle and Washington, D.C.
The 24-hour cable news channel MSNBC, a joint venture between Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) and General Electric’s (NYSE: GE) NBC Universal unit, has hired all of EveryBlock’s workers, according to EveryBlock’s blog. Critics and observers of the network, including antithesis FOXNews, claim that MSNBC has become increasingly biased to the liberal side of politics, compared with other networks, especially with its prime-time lineup of personalities Chris Matthews, Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann.
Adrian Holovaty, 28, is a web developer, journalist and entrepreneur living in Chicago, Illinois. Holovaty, a Ukrainian American, grew up in Naperville, Illinois. He graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism in 2001 and worked as a web developer/journalist for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Lawrence Journal-World and The Washington Post before starting EveryBlock in 2007.
In 2005, Holovaty launched chicagocrime.org, a Google Maps mashup of Chicago Police Department crime data that was then succeeded by Everyblock after Holovaty was awarded a $1.1 million Knight Foundation grant and left his job as editor of editorial innovations at washingtonpost.com to start EveryBlock in 2007. Chicagocrime.org won the 2005 Batten Award for Innovations in Journalism and was named by The New York Times as one of 2005’s best ideas. As one of the first Google Maps added value products, it helped influence Google to create its official Google Maps API.