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Founded 2009
Headquarters Brooklyn

Atavist is a media and software company. It developed a platform agnostic publishing tool in 2009, made available to the public in 2013 .


Atavist was founded in 2009 by Jefferson Rabb, Evan Ratliff, and Nicholas Thompson.[1]


The Atavist is a monthly publication of longform narrative journalism.[2] The stories are between 10,000 and 20,000 words and include video, interactive elements and full audio accompaniment. In 2014, three titles were optioned for film:

  • "American Hippopotamus" by Jon Mooallem[3]
  • "One Thousand Pounds of Dynamite" by Adam Higginbotham[4]
  • "The Trials of White Boy Rick" by Evan Hughes[5]

In 2015 The Atavist was awarded a National Magazine Award for Feature Writing for their piece "Love and Ruin," by James Verini. They were the first digital-only publication to receive the award.[6]

A partnership with Atavist Books, a multiplatform book publishing company founded by Barry Diller, Scott Rudin, and Frances Coady, launched in the spring of 2014 with "Sleep Donation" by Karen Russell. [7]All titles are produced and distributed using Creatavist.


TED Books,[8] babycakes, Pearson and The Paris Review[9] have all used Creatavist software to publish digital editions through tablets and mobile devices. Creatavist became available for public use in 2013.[10]


  1. ^ Gustini, Ray (21 May 2012). "The Atavist Rises; Amazon Charms Waterstones". The Atlantic Wire.
  2. ^ Pavlus, John (18 January 2011). "Designing the Atavist, an App That Rescues Long-form Journalism". Fast Company.
  3. ^ Fleming Jr., Mike (5 June 2014). "RatPac, Edward Norton’s Class 5 Options ‘American Hippopotamus'". Deadline.
  4. ^ Sneider, Jeff (14 August 2014). "Bradley Cooper, Todd Phillips to Produce ‘A Thousand Pounds of Dynamite’ for Warner Bros.". The Wrap.
  5. ^ Ford, Rebecca (9 October 2014). "'Oblivion' Director Joseph Kosinski to Helm 'The Trials of White Boy Rick'". Hollywood Reporter.
  6. ^ Sebastian, Michael (2 February 2015). "Vogue Wins Magazine of the Year at National Magazine Awards". Advertising Age.
  7. ^ Coffey, Michael (7 October 2013). "One Year Later, Coady’s Atavist Books Set to Launch". Publisher's Weekly.
  8. ^ Losowsky, Andrew (6 July 2012). "TED Books Launches Reading App On iPad Featuring Multimedia Extras (PHOTOS)". HuffPost. Retrieved 10 August 2013. 
  9. ^ "App Time at The Paris Review". BULLETIN. The Paris Review. Retrieved 10 August 2013. 
  10. ^ Dollar, Steve (17 June 2013). "In Brooklyn, Creating Apps for the Do-It-Yourself Scene". The Wall Street Journal.

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