The Kernel's back to make new enemies
Having paid off its debts, a controversial online magazine is relaunching. By Oscar Williams-Grut
Sunday 02 June 2013
An infamous online magazine forced to close over unpaid wages is set to be re-launched with its divisive founder in charge after paying off debts of over £24,000.
London-based online technology magazine The Kernel was launched in November 2011 by former Telegraph technology writer Milo Yiannopoulos with the intention of "fix[ing] European technology journalism".
The site mixed bitchy gossip about the London tech scene, such as an article asking why one German entrepreneur is so sexy, with more considered think pieces. The site led The Observer to dub Yiannopoulos the "pitbull of tech media" while Forbes called him "digital media's Citizen Kane".
But the publication was dogged by complaints from employees and contributors of unpaid wages.
Yiannopoulos's acerbic and often offensive tone – with articles such as "Put a sock in it you dickless wonders" about the number of women at tech conferences – also attracted numerous critics, including The Guardian's technology editor Charles Arthur whom Yiannopoulos claims led a "campaign" against the site.
Former editor Jason Hesse says Yiannopoulos went "too far at times, which I certainly wasn't happy with and was part of the reason why I left".
The Kernel was forced to shut in March after Hesse challenged its parent company, Sentinel Media, over unpaid wages amounting to £16,853, a sum it could not pay.
The Independent on Sunday can reveal that The Kernel will be relaunched in August, backed by German venture capitalist firm Berlin42 and with Mr Yiannopoulos remaining as editor-in-chief.
Berlin42 has acquired the domain for an undisclosed amount, and founding partner Aydogan Ali Schosswald will join its newly formed publishing company, Kernel Media, as chief executive. Yiannopoulos, who has been based in Berlin since April, privately settled debts owed to six former employees and freelancers amounting to around £24,000 in April. He stresses he would not repeat the financial mistakes he made, saying Berlin42 was providing a "runway" to fund the relaunch.
He also defended the tone of The Kernel, saying: "I'm very proud of a lot of the journalism that we published and the vast majority of enemies we made were for good reasons – they are enemies because they're bad people.
"Obviously as an opinionated publication we did and will continue to make enemies."
The relaunched publication, based between London and Berlin, will focus on areas such as modern warfare, neuroscience, artificial intelligence, pornography and space travel. Subscription newsletter The Nutshell, previously The Kernel's sole source of income, will not return.
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
Ian Brady: Moors murderer announces his support for Ukip and the SNP
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Bali Nine executions in Indonesia: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford says she 'just wants to get it over with'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£50000 - £55000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Business Analyst - Financial Service...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: At SThree, we like to be differe...