Whisper Lands Broadcast Partnership With Fusion (Exclusive)

Whisper CEO Michael Heyward
Whisper CEO Michael Heyward
 Christopher Patey

Anonymous secret-sharing app Whisper is making its television debut. 

The Venice-based startup has inked a content partnership with Fusion to integrate Whisper posts into the cable network's digital and television platforms. It's the first broadcast partnership for Whisper. 

Fusion will now work with Whisper to develop stories and investigate trends based on posts made on the app. The startup network from Univision and ABC News also will integrate Whisper-inspired content into its broadcasts and news coverage to provide additional context to its reporting. 

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Whisper editor-in-chief Neetzan Zimmerman tells THR that his editorial team has already begun working with Fusion to develop two college-themed stories: recreational drug use at America's top party schools and sex talk at Ivy League schools. 

"The Fusion brand has a lot of overlap with Whisper, both in terms of their approach to media and also their demographics," he says. "Fusion labels itself as a news outlet for the new generation and obviously that's where Whisper lives."

Whisper announced in May an update to its app that allows users to search for posts by category, location and relevance. Its editorial team will use similar search capabilities to pinpoint specific posts that are relevant to Fusion's reporting. 

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“Whisper creates community and compelling conversations around the news and issues that are important to our young, diverse audience,” Fusion CEO Isaac Lee said in a statement. “By incorporating Whisper content into our reporting, we’ll be able to expand and enhance our ability to tell stories from a unique perspective.”

Zimmerman, who joined Whisper in January from Gawker, has been charged with building up Whisper's editorial partnerships. The company, led by CEO Michael Heyward, also works with Huffington Post and BuzzFeed.

"Every one of these partnerships is a way to improve our reach," he adds. "As we figure out, for example, how to best package Whisper for TV, there's no reason why we can't develop other TV-centric partnerships." 

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