Obit: Jebio, the bizarre marketing effort of a Florida newspaper, dies unexpected death


Jebio — described by the Tampa Bay Times as its guide to the 2016 presidential campaign — died Saturday night evening after the first three letters of the effort, Jeb Bush, suspended his campaign for president of the United States.

Jebio had not yet reached its first birthday.

Launched in March of 2015, Jebio was part of the Times’ effort to remain relevant in a political news environment quickly becoming dominated by online news websites, such as POLITICO and Florida

Jebio is survived by the ‘Daily Buzz on Florida Politics’ newsletter, an email with 5 updates from the Times’ political team. The newsletter was designed to compete with other, more popular email programs, most of which arrive in readers’ inboxes in the morning. The Times’ offering arrives each day at 3 p.m. when the previous days’ news has already been thoroughly analyzed, while most of tomorrow’s stories have not taken shape.

While the Times’ newsletter is certain to live on, Jebio’s death was unexpected, leaving many Times staffers in a state of inconsolable grieving.

“We have a Jebio app and a Jebio Twitter profile…” said a tearful Amy Hollyfield, the Times editor in charge of the newspaper’s political coverage. “What are we suppose to do now?”

Political editor Adam Smith was also struck by Jebio’s quick demise.

“One day, your idea of putting Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio on top of flamingoes is right there,” said Smith, his eyes still bloodshot from a long night of crying. “The next day, Jeb’s head on a flamingo is gone. You just never know.”

A memorial service to celebrate the life of Jebio will be held Monday, February 22 at 6 p.m. at Hofbrauhaus, the beer garden located next door to the Times’ headquarters.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including Florida Politics and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Schorsch is also the publisher of INFLUENCE Magazine. For several years, Peter's blog was ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

One comment

  • Jim Bleyer

    February 21, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    Excellent piece.

Comments are closed.


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