Kara Swisher

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Exclusive: AOL Poised to Hire Susan Lyne to Run All Content Brands, Except HuffPo


Sources said AOL is set to hire well-known media and Internet exec Susan Lyne to be CEO of its content brands unit at the New York-based Web company, except for the Huffington Post Media Group headed by Arianna Huffington.

Lyne has most recently been chairman of the Gilt Groupe and was CEO previous to that. She will retain her board role at the online retailer, but is likely to give up her director role at AOL. She is set to be on its executive operating committee going forward.

Lyne has had a long and varied career in media and is a high-profile hire. Beside Gilt, she also ran Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and was a top television network exec at ABC.

At AOL, she will have purview over a range of properties, including TechCrunch, Engadget and StyleList.

In related news, Bloomberg reported earlier that COO Artie Minson was departing AOL, but there are no immediate plans for him to leave. But that could change, since CEO Tim Armstrong has been moving to decentralize the company and his role could shift accordingly.

An AOL spokesperson declined to comment.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald