SmallBusinessExecutive (SmallBizChicago.com) is a collaborative website full of feature stories, expert columns, events, startup information and discussion on technology, finance, marketing, innovation, human resources, the environment, management, health care, and the economy. It was designed to inform, inspire and connect businesses in Chicago and beyond.
L3C Chicago, L3C owns and operates SmallBizChicago.com. Journalist Ann Meyer launched the site in July 2010 and is the sole owner of L3C Chicago, which provides editorial services, including content strategy, consulting, editorial management, reporting, writing, editing and research to media outlets and other organizations.
An L3C is a low-profit limited liability company. A form of LLC, the L3C structure can be used by for-profit ventures with a primary goal of achieving a social purpose. While many L3Cs have purposes similar to nonprofits, L3C can distribute their profits to shareholders, a major distinction. By law, L3Cs are called “low-profit” companies, because profit is a secondary goal. At the same time, the amount of profits L3Cs can earn is not restricted. L3Cs pay taxes on income as all LLCs do, and contributions to L3Cs are not tax-deductible.
The mission of SmallBizChicago.com is to inform, inspire and connect businesses, particularly small businesses and others underserved by mainstream media.
By providing accurate, engaging and practical news on topics of interest to the public, and in particular to small business owners, entrepreneurs and nonprofit leaders, SmallBusinessExecutive aims to fill a gap in the market. The site has provided exclusive articles, plus aggregated news, expert columns and events announcements.
One of the major differences between SmallBusinessExecutive and the myriad blogs providing more opinion than fact is a commitment to the highest journalism standards. To this end, L3C Chicago has established the following core values:
- Old-school journalism values of accuracy, objectivity and integrity remain top priority even as the world of journalism evolves.
- All business executives and available experts should be given equal consideration for coverage, regardless of ethnicity, gender, religious background, native language, etc., and L3C Chicago strives to shed light on businesses owned and operated by women, minorities and immigrants. At the same time, the editors reserve the right to vet sources and information as well as unsolicited columns.
- L3C Chicago is not currently soliciting ads and will show no favoritism in its editorial coverage, but instead adhere to sound journalistic principles when writing, editing and posting articles. The company places its mission of providing information ahead of the pursuit of profits, always remembering that the company’s primary responsibility is to report the news accurately and fairly to best serve the public interest and maintain credibility. When the company provides editorial services to other organizations, those editors and writers will disclose their engagements if and when they write about the same organization.
- L3C Chicago takes precautions to guard against errors, omissions and misunderstandings. It clearly separates editorial content from any sponsored or paid for by an advertiser. Any errors will be corrected promptly and publicly.
- L3C will guard against bias stemming from conflicts of interest and openly disclose any relationships that might be perceived as a conflict.
- By adhering to these principles, L3C Chicago aims to present an exemplary product.