John Caldwell speaks candidly about National Geographic’s opportunity “to go to a whole other level”

If you’re a regular here at Society Matters, the firing of Rob Covey is old news. But the quotes in today’s AdWeek story featuring John Caldwell, president of National Geographic Digital Media, are new — and quite amusing.

June 9, 2011

National Geographic has fired the editor of its award-winning website—the same month that it collected a Magazine of the Year award recognizing its print and digital success…. 

John Caldwell

John Caldwell, president of National Geographic Digital Media, said he wouldn’t comment on Covey’s departure since it was a personnel matter, but said he was looking for a senior-level replacement to step up the department’s social media, online video, and apps initiatives.I think, candidly, there’s an opportunity to go to a whole other level,” he said. “The landscape has changed more in the past 18 months than I’ve ever seen. We as a group are constantly taking a look to see that we’re aligned [with that change]. The result of those shifts is the personnel change.”…

Under Covey, the site has grown its audience dramatically, launched the popular community page My Shot where visitors can upload their own photos, and won scores of awards. In May, he and Johns shared the American Society of Magazine Editors’ Magazine of the Year award. In March, the site was a finalist for three digital National Magazine Awards, including one for online department. He couldn’t be reached for comment.

Read the whole thing here.

We hear you thinking: I’d sure love to be that “senior-level replacement,” but I bet it’s hard to keep pace with a visionary like John Caldwell, who, as a National Geographic president, must be a thought leader in the digital world.

Here’s a recent interview with John. See if you can keep up:

Now you’re probably thinking: Okay, that seems rather… basic. But could I produce the sorts of quality video games that would meet John Caldwell’s exacting standards — and meet the high consumer expectations for National Geographic products? Am I really equipped to play in this league?

To find out, take a peek at the trailer for a recent National Geographic video game, for which John Caldwell deserves full credit. It’s his product.

About now, you’re surely wondering: Why is National Geographic producing video games with Atari-era graphics? Aren’t most of today’s video games far more visually exciting? Yes, they are:

To sum up: If you think you can keep pace with John Caldwell as he leads National Geographic Digital Media to “a whole other level,” then check out NG’s employment opportunities here. Open positions include:

  • Web Producer
  • Project Manager
  • Director of Strategic Development

Please don’t delay. John Caldwell needs help.

  • Chris Tompkins

    You know going from a 1990’s to a 2000’s mindset isn’t exactly something to be commended.  Its 2011,  SoLoMo –> You need to get MOBILE.  natgeo’s current ipad offering is pitiful and they don’t have a smartphone website at all.  C’mon!

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