I’m Leaving Beta-i. But, Here’s What I’ll Be Doing Next

I know what you’re thinking. There she is again with one of those click-bait titles. She’s obviously not leaving. She’s probably referring to Game of Thrones and those creepy white walkers.

But, no, this is actually happening. I’m leaving Beta-i and I just sent my last newsletter.

So, allow me to explain.

I’ve been the Almighty Duchess of Content at Beta-i for the past 3 years, and as Ricardo Marvão, co-founder of Beta-i, would put it, it’s been amaaaaazing. I’ve worked with the best team in the world. The kind of team that keeps hustling for what we believe is right, even when the odds are against us. A team that supports great ideas like if they were our own, and that has been bringing people together ever since Lisbon started taking its first steps as a startup city.

But, even though this kind of breaks my heart, it’s time to move on.

I’ve been writing about startups and entrepreneurs for the past 3 years at Beta-i, and now it’s time for the Duchess to build her own kingdom.

From this moment forward, I will be focussing on growing my own independent media project called É Apenas Fumaça, where we take a relevant issue from our society such as racism, immigration, and climate change, and we go deep.

But, why?

Well, at É Apenas Fumaça, we believe that only a well-informed society will have the strength to make democracy work, and the media plays a major role.

The role of the media is to scrutinise Democracy. Is to hold the powerful accountable while giving voice to the people. We believe that the media exists not just to report when there are new facts, but to continue reporting until those critical issues cease to exist. The media is not just supposed to tell you what happened but also why it happened.

In a moment of history where there are people with no guaranteed access to basic needs and human rights, everything but this is entertainment. However, a big slice of mainstream media has been failing its purpose, and we want something different.

É Apenas Fumaça started because we were ourselves disappointed with the mainstream media in Portugal. At the same time, we were watching, reading and listening to international independent media projects such as The Intercept, Democracy Now, Athens Live, De Correspondent, and News Deeply, and we kept on wondering why there was nothing similar in Portugal. Why was nobody giving voice to the voiceless and covering issues that often affect the minorities and the most fragile fractions of our population? That’s when É Apenas Fumaça started.

However, what followed was slightly unexpected. We saw the first hundred people, and then the first thousand people who were listening to our episodes on a regular basis. We got hundreds of messages, comments and emails from our listeners asking for us to cover more and more topics, giving us their opinion, and even suggesting people for us to interview.

What started off with as a weekly podcast is now growing into something bigger, and I’m tagging along with it.

Find out more about É Apenas Fumaça here and make sure you let me know what you think (sorry for those who don’t speak Portuguese).

Thank you Beta-i from the bottom of my heart!

Cheers,
Maria