The New York Observer Will Launch Its Own Tech Site

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Photo: CHANCE YEH/Patrick McMullan

Elizabeth Spiers is barely five weeks into her tenure as the New York Observer's new editor-in-chief, and she's already making big changes at the old salmon lady, or rather its creaky digital arm. Tomorrow, Observer.com is launching a stand-alone tech site, Betabeat.com, to cover the city's booming tech scene and the movers and shakers who give it that bubblicious shape. Back in January, the paper's website launched a New York–specific tech blog. "Within weeks, it became one of the most active sections on the site," Observer Media group owner (and Ivanka baby daddy) Jared Kushner said in a press release. Management has been pushing for more of an Internet presence and with the last of the old guard out, it appears the new reign has begun. Ben Popper, who has been running the site's tech section, will come in as a founding editor under Spiers, and Adrianne Jeffries, who has been filing dispatches from the start-up bus to SXSW, will also join the team. Although Betabeat will compete with sites like Business Insider's Silicon Alley Insider, both SAI and TechCrunch have more of a national focus on the big players. For all the hype and hand-wringing about New York's tech scene, no one has cornered the market — or even attempted — Über-insider-y, local coverage. Like all things tech these days, expect the copycats to follow.