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Odyssey (publication)

Odyssey (also known as The Odyssey or The Odyssey Online) is an American internet media company that operates based on a crowdsourced model, receiving articles from a base of thousands of volunteer authors and edited through their teams of volunteer, outsourced, and professional content strategists.[3][4][5] The platform produces material covering virtually all major topics, including politics, sports, fashion, technology, entertainment, business, science, and health, among others.[3] Odyssey has over 15,000 contributing writers, 1,200 communities, and over 30 million readers across the country.[6] Each community consists of at least 12 writers, a voluntary Editor-in-chief, and a content strategist based in the New York City headquarters. Within each team are opportunities for executive positions, like a contributing editor, social outreach specialist, recruitment director, and more, all on a voluntary basis. Writers have the opportunity to receive compensation for their articles based on the number of page views a contributor generates.

Odyssey online.png
Type of site
OwnerOdyssey Media Group, Inc.
Key peopleEvan Burns
(co-founder and executive chairman)
Adrian France
Alexa rankDecrease 9678 (June 2019)[2]
LaunchedJuly 16, 2010; 9 years ago (2010-07-16)[1] (made public in 2014)

Odyssey was co-founded by Evan Burns and Adrian France, two students from Indiana University, in 2014 under the Odyssey Media Group, Inc.[3][7][8] The platform's users consist mostly of university and college students in the age range of 18-28, and its viewers mostly come from each individual user's social media networks, such as Facebook and Twitter.[3][7]



In 2009, Evan Burns and Adrian France co-founded Odyssey Media Group, Inc. It started as a print publication, called The Odyssey, at Indiana University with a focus on Greek life and campus issues not generally covered by the university’s official news publication.[7]

Odyssey expanded itsprint publication to include Greek chapters at other universities, including San Diego State University, the University of South Carolina, the University of Arkansas and the University of Alabama.[7]

Online transition and fundingEdit

In 2014, Odyssey was launched as an online publication and platform.[3][7] In 2015 and early 2016, Odyssey received funding from various sources, totaling over $33 million.[3][9]

In February 2017, Odyssey laid off 53 employees, 1/3 of its staff. Evan Burns, the former CEO, was relieved of most major financial and management duties and was given the title executive chairman.[10]

Business overviewEdit

Odyssey's users are required to apply to start writing articles; the requirements for these authors include having a “unique perspective” and the ability to submit one piece per week.[3][7]

Odyssey's writers are divided into communities, most of which are college and university campuses, though users are not required to attend as a student at those campuses. Instead, users who do not attend a college or university can write for the community which is located nearest to them.[7] Once a user has been approved, they can start posting content on the platform. Most pieces of content are reviewed in a three-tiered editing system, starting with volunteer editors, then moving on to an outsourced set of freelance copy editors, and finally back to a set of paid content strategists, employed by Odyssey.[3][7]

While users are not regularly paid, incentives for highly-viewed articles are given. Writers have the opportunity to receive compensation for their articles based on the number of page views a contributor generates.[citation needed]


  1. ^ " WHOIS, DNS, & Domain Info - DomainTools". WHOIS. Retrieved 2017-01-24.
  2. ^ " Site Overview". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h "A startup that just raised $25 million is like a college newspaper on steroids — and it's racking up 30 million uniques a month". Business Insider. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  4. ^ "Odyssey Media Group, Inc.: Private Company Information - Bloomberg". Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  5. ^ "Fast-growing local media firm lands $3 million in funding". Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  6. ^ "Odyssey".
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h "This Is Odyssey". Odyssey. 2016-06-01. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  8. ^ Rooney, Jennifer. "Evan Burns, 27 - pg.3". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  9. ^ Dick, Gerry. "Odyssey Eyes 100 Million Users". Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  10. ^ Entis, Laura. "Inside Odyssey: The Decline of a College Media Empire". Retrieved 2019-11-03.