Publisher Alexandra Tselios explains why this Australian-based startup is now extending to the USA and what it means for all of us.
I launched The Big Smoke in Australia back in 2013, after having a coffee with a friend and realising that many of the opinion and media sites offered at the time simply did not resonate with me. I wanted to hear from people encompassing all walks of life, literally from cabbie to court judge.
Since we launched, we have steadily built a platform that allows the unbiased publishing of opinions without fear or favour. Some people have criticized us and said, “You shouldn’t be publishing content you don’t agree with”, but who are we to be the moral compass on a particular issue? We have no political or social agenda, we simply aim to publish content that is thought-provoking, that may make you angry, that may make you laugh and which, importantly, you can also contribute to without the barriers presenting many writers and opinions today. I created a platform that would cultivate the multitude of voices in our society that were actually articulate writers. They were quite intelligent and well-spoken people, but they weren’t journalists.
“The Big Smoke” as a term is often used to describe a major city, in Australia that is often referenced as Sydney. However, The Big Smoke in my mind has taken on another identity and quickly has become a vast, exciting urban digital eco-system and ultimately “curators of conversation”.
I am proud that in Australia we have a strong team of people and a huge pool of writers, and I am excited to extend this now to the USA. Greg Gerding has been a long-time friend of mine and a writer I respect deeply as well as just a really rad human being and pal. I know that the American public and writers are safe in his editorial hands and I am buoyed by the support we are already seeing in the USA. If you come to the site be prepared to be challenged, be prepared to be angry, be prepared to agree, laugh and be prepared to offer your own opinion.
Welcome to The Big Smoke.