When We Meet a True Disruptor…. Or Should I Say Leader?

There are countless ways to describe leadership and leaders, so let’s get a little raw and discuss my favorite, “The Disruptor.” Leadership fires me up and disruptive leadership really fires me up. So, when I meet a disruptive leader, well, I get fired up. Today I’m fired up because I think I just met one on a podcast that I co-host. There’s a new company called Civil and it was founded by Matthew Iles. Matthew and Civil are taking on the journalism industry with words like blockchain, decentralization, honesty, and accountability. Most importantly, he doesn’t care what he’s up against.

Let’s dismiss our ever present political peccadilloes for a second and all agree that the state of journalism today is troubling at best. It doesn’t matter if we are talking about institutionalization in the New York Times, New York Post, or the Wall Street Journal. Never mind the absurd like Facebook or Twitter. Journalism today has become one big opinion page that is rudderless, un-accountable, wholly centralized, and leaderless.

Matthew Iles, CEO of Civil

Matthew Iles is looking to take the old, worn out model of journalism that is corrupted by outside forces and turn it on it’s head. I’ll direct you to the podcast at the end of this piece, so you can hear Matthew for yourself, but in the mean time allow me to give you some impressions on why Matthew is a disruptive leader.

Matthew is combining the old model that once made journalism the heart and soul of our country with today’s business model of eliminating excessive overhead and middlemen and employing state of the art technology: blockchain. Only the most vital personnel are in play in this journalistic process. It’s not just you and me posting online, it’s an actual journalist…who gets paid…who gets edited…who gets fact checked…and who gets their work challenged by articles of differing points of view as a matter of course. The people are back in charge.

As I listened to Matthew and started buying in, I had to ask what the likes of Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg had to fear from Civil and how they would attempt to block Civil’s new form of honest and accountable journalism. After we got a good laugh that Mark Zuckerberg and his billions will be just fine, it was his answer that turned me into a fan. Matthew essentially doesn’t care because he has a vision, a plan, and a passion that he thinks is better. That’s what a disruptor says, “I don’t care what they are doing or how they react because I like my vision and plan and that’s what we’re going with.”

To be continued…

You can listen to the podcast, Leadership in Tech Episode 36: Civil- Decentralized Journalism here.

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