Pitchfork has named Puja Patel editor-in-chief, responsible for the 23-year-old brand’s editorial content across all platforms and events. The Spin EIC begins her new role on Oct. 15, replacing founder Ryan Schreiber, who stayed on in the top editorial job following Pitchfork’s sale to Condé Nast in October 2015.
“Puja is a highly respected and innovative editor who has spent her career covering the music industry,” said Schreiber, who will remain as a strategic advisor and contribute to projects, events and other opportunities. “We expect that she will bring new perspectives and ideas to Pitchfork’s incredibly talented editorial team. I’m confident she will help further solidify Pitchfork’s standing as the most esteemed music brand in the industry.”
Pitchfork is coming off another successful music festival in July, which has seen attendance grow by more than 10,000 over the past five years. Traffic to its website of news, reviews and deep-dive features is up 65 percent year-over-year, according to comScore, and it recently further committed itself to enhanced hip-hop coverage with the launch of a new vertical to the genre, called Levels.
Billboard has also learned that Pitchfork’s managing editor, Matthew Schnipper, is being elevated to executive editor, replacing Mark Richardson, who left last month.
Patel first joined Spin in late 2013 as an associate editor, before departing for senior positions at Wondering Sound (RIP) and Deadspin. She rejoined Spin in September 2016 as top editor of the digital-only music magazine, where she increased its audience by 14 percent in her first year. Over the course of her career, Patel’s has contributed writing to MTV, the Village Voice, Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, VICE and Fader, among others.
“I am honored to be joining Pitchfork as editor-in-chief,” said Patel. “As a devoted reader of the publication for over a decade, I’ve long admired the site’s thoughtful, in-depth writing and clear commitment to discovery and taste. Ryan has built Pitchfork into a special place for music obsessives with wide-ranging curiosity, and I’m so excited to helm and expand on that vision in the coming months.”