Nick Bilton

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Nick Bilton
Nick Bilton in 2014
Occupation(s)Journalist, author and filmmaker
EmployerVanity Fair
Notable workHatching Twitter (2013), American Kingpin (2017), Fake Famous (2021)

Nick Bilton is a British-American journalist, author, and filmmaker. He is currently a special correspondent at Vanity Fair.

Life and career[edit]

Bilton was born in England, but later moved to the United States and attended Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.[1]

Bilton worked at The New York Times from 2003 to 2016, as a design editor in the newsroom and a researcher in the research and development labs. Before he left, he was a technology columnist and the lead writer for the Bits blog.[2]

In 2016, he left The New York Times to become a special correspondent for Vanity Fair,[3] where he writes features and columns. He co-wrote the 2015-2019 Vanity Fair New Establishment List.[4]

Fake Famous[edit]

In 2021, HBO released Fake Famous, a documentary film Bilton wrote, directed and produced about social media and influencer culture.[5]

Twitter lawsuit[edit]

In 2016, Bilton fought, and won, a 1st Amendment lawsuit when he was deposed to testify in a class action lawsuit against Twitter, after an article he wrote in Vanity Fair, “Twitter Is Betting Everything on Jack Dorsey. Will It Work?”[6] alleged that the company knowingly deceived investors in 2015 about its users’ daily and monthly engagement with the site.[7]


Bilton is the author of three books: I Live in the Future & Here's How It Works: Why Your World, Work, and Brain Are Being Creatively Disrupted (2010),[8] Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal (2013),[9] and American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road (2017).

Hatching Twitter told the story of the Twitter's early days and its four founders—Evan Williams, Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, and Biz Stone—who are portrayed as "mediocrities, narcissists and mopers who seem to spend as much time on scheming, self-promotion and self-destruction as on anything else", according to Tim Wu's review in the Washington Post.[10] The book was optioned by Lionsgate in 2013, yet as of 2023 no series has been produced.[11] Published in May 2017, Bilton's book, American Kingpin, tells the story of the Silk Road marketplace, its founder Ross Ulbricht (who went by "Dread Pirate Roberts"), and how U.S. law enforcement arrested him.[12][13] In June 2017, The Hollywood Reporter reported that the Coen brothers and Steven Zaillian were adapting the book into a movie.[14]


Year Title Director Writer Producer
2023 Razzlekahn[15] No No Yes
2021 Fake Famous Yes Yes Yes
2019 The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley No No Yes


  1. ^ Bilton, Nick (2018-02-16). "What Marjory Stoneman Douglas, My Alma Mater, Should Teach the G.O.P." Vanity Fair. Retrieved 2020-03-12.
  2. ^ "Nick Bilton Turns Down $1.5 Million+ from CBS/CNET, Stays at NY Times". Uncrunched. Archived from the original on 2 June 2016. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  3. ^ "The 60-second interview: Nick Bilton, Special Correspondent, Vanity Fair". Politico. 22 April 2016. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  4. ^ "New Establishment 2015 | Vanity Fair | Vanity Fair". Archived from the original on 2015-09-14.
  5. ^ Fry, Naomi (2021-02-20). "Fake Famous" and the Tedium of Influencer Culture?". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2022-02-16.
  6. ^ Bilton, Nick (2016-06-01). "Twitter Is Betting Everything on Jack Dorsey. Will It Work?". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 2022-02-16.
  7. ^ Frankel, Alison (2021-09-21). "Twitter investors want Vanity Fair writer to testify at securities class action trial". Reuters. Retrieved 2022-02-16.
  8. ^ "The Conversation: Nick Bilton Explains the Future". ABC News. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  9. ^ Burkeman, Oliver (13 November 2013). "Hatching Twitter by Nick Bilton – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  10. ^ Tim Wu (19 December 2013). "Book review: 'Hatching Twitter' by Nick Bilton". Washington Post. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  11. ^ Marechal, A.J. (December 18, 2013). "Lionsgate Adapting Nick Bilton's 'Hatching Twitter' for TV". Variety.
  12. ^ Tiku, Nitasha (12 June 2017). "How the Dark Web's Dread Pirate Roberts Went Down". New York Times. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  13. ^ Dilworth, Dianna. "Nick Bilton to Write Silk Road Book". Adweek. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
  14. ^ Tatiana Siegel; Natalie Jarvey (2 June 2017). "Steve Zaillian to Write Fox Thriller 'Dark Web'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  15. ^ Roth, Emma (2022-02-12). "Netflix orders docuseries on crypto laundering couple". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-01-16.