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More than 5 billion classified ads, 24 years, and billions of dollars later, Craigslist founder Craig Newmark is giving his money away.
The entrepreneur was a programmer at IBM for 17 years. He moved to San Francisco to work for Charles Schwab. It was on the west coast where Newmark was first introduced to the internet. He began developing what would become the online marketplace as what he referred to as an “internet commune” where people could share ideas. In 1995, the world was first introduced to Craigslist.
Newmark said that the invention of the internet didn’t faze him all that much in an interview with cnet.com:
The internet wasn’t that much of a surprise to me in terms of what it was doing, what it could do and all that. Because, science fiction. Because, nerd. I’ve been reading, for almost 60 years, explorations of possible new technologies.
Newmark no longer runs his most famous creation. Now, he works with his charity, Craig Newmark Philanthropies. He personally has given over $100 million away.
And he’s focused on an industry in trouble: journalism. A decade after he created his online market, Newmark gave a reported $20,000 to a nonprofit producing investigative journalism about the internet. Since then, he’s donated to the likes of New York Public Radio, Poynter and the journalism schools at both CUNY and Columbia. Newmark is also serving on the board of directors for a new investigative online outlet called The Markup.
We caught up with Newmark at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June and talked philanthropy, journalism, the election and what’s next.
Produced by Paige Osburn.
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