Intro to Meduza

You may have spotted an article in your top stories that looks like it’s full of “encrypted” characters. Actually, those are cyrillic letters and the post is in Russian. Here’s a brief overview of what it’s about.

This article looks at the CMS (Content Management System) used by the Meduza Project — its main modules and some design decisions. It is the first article in our Inside Meduza series. And it’s obviously inspired by How we build Medium

We’d now like to explain why you should give some time to a Russian news outlet.

Front page of Meduza.io (available in white color as well — see a switch on the topline)

First, a bit of background.

1. In the 20+ years since the collapse of the USSR, Russian news outlets were able to offer more than just one point of view.

2. Putin’s state now has the ways and means to ban all media (including blogs and Twitter accounts) that contradict propaganda from the Kremlin.

3. There are 150+ mln people living in Russia. It is the largest country in the world. It is rich in oil, uranium, fresh water and bountiful land. Its people have contributed precious works of art and science to the shared capital of humankind.

Now about the project.

Our iPhone app (we have Android app too, Windows Phone is coming)
  1. Meduza is a spin-off from the most successful and most popular Russian news website Lenta.ru.
  2. Our main goal is to provide an impartial and coherent picture of the news that is relevant to Russia.
  3. We have an editorial team in Riga, Latvia (20 people) + a few scouts in the field.
  4. We have a website and mobile apps for iOS and Android. Our infrastructure gets around the Russian Firewall and is resilient to cyber-attacks. We have a 7-person technical team.

In fact, we have something global in the works as well — we’d like to build transparent, cheap and reliable news delivery infrastructure.

Infrastructure which is simple enough to enable a small group of people with limited resources to stand up to a propaganda giant.

Stay tuned.