About Us

tld online and print

The Lo-Down is a community website dedicated to daily news coverage, including in-depth reporting on urban issues, real estate, popular culture and – most significantly – the people who live and work in one of the world’s greatest neighborhoods, the Lower East Side.

We are Ed Litvak and Traven Rice, a reformed television news producer and filmmaker (in that order). We are Lower East Side residents who launched The Lo-Down to help provide our community with a constant source of information about current events, culture, real estate, food and entertainment.

Our award-winning publication is frequently cited by popular news sources, such as WNYC, The New York Times, Politico and New York Magazine. We are featured in the Columbia Journalism Review’s News Frontier Database. You can also read a profile of us in the Village Voice article, “I Blog New York: Your Guide to Gotham’s Best” here.

The Lo-Down is a member of the Local Independent Online Publishers Association (LION). And we are one of six pilot sites partnering with the Local News Lab, a journalism sustainability project of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation.

Rather than serve a single segment of our diverse neighborhood, we are a resource for all cultures and groups on the LES to share information and ideas and to engage in a meaningful dialogue about issues that unite and divide us. We are not a blog that espouses a particular point of view or has an agenda. We work hard to reach out to people and organizations that are not often heard from – and to solicit multiple points of view and new perspectives.

Who Works on The Lo-Down

Ed Litvak (Co-founder/Editor-in-Chief) has more than 20 years of experience as a television news producer in local stations, cable properties and broadcast networks. He was a supervising producer at NBC’s Today Show and the executive producer of CNN’s morning program. As Editor-in-Chief of TLD, Litvak has been featured on WNYC’s Brian Lehrer show, NY1’s Inside City Hall and has moderated numerous political forums.

Traven Rice (Co-founder and Publisher) oversees business, marketing and operations for The Lo-Down. Rice, a filmmaker, is also the Arts and Culture Editor.  She is a board member of the Local Online News Publishers Association (LION).

Kim Sillen is our Art Director.  She is a graphic designer who specializes in print, branding, illustration and textile design. Kim has taught studio art and digital drawing, and images of her designs have been featured in various publications, including The New York Times and New York Magazine. She lives on the Lower East Side, and her work can be viewed at www.kimsillendesign.com and www.kimsillenprints.com.

Leo Kin is The Lo-Down’s design and tech consultant.

Mark Ward designed The Lo-Down banner and the topical logos you see on the web site. He can be contacted at mward@threeoeight.com.

Our Contributors

Tobi Elkin is a writer, editor and interviewer who lives on the Lower East Side and is a regular reader of The Lo-Down. Her diverse interests include arts and entertainment, film, food and cultural critique. She can be reached at tobi.elkin@gmail.com.

Royal Young is a New York-based writer who contributes literary coverage to Interview Magazine and the new web site Holy Diver. Young recently completed “Fame Shark,” his memoir.  After six years living in exile (in Brooklyn), this Lower East Side native is back in his natural habitat, rediscovering the old neighborhood.

Flora Theden is a writer and publicist from Atlanta, Georgia who resides on the Lower East Side. She loves to travel and enjoys all things indulgent: music, food, wine and shopping. She can be reached at flora.theden@gmail.com.


Comment Policy

Comments on The Lo-Down are moderated. While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We do not edit comments- they are either approved or not approved. A few things that will very likely result in your post being rejected: personal attacks, obscenity, commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence and SHOUTING. Also, comments that make unsubstantiated allegations about another person or an organization or business, will very likely not be approved.


Third Party Links

Our website contains links to other sites and resources on the Internet controlled by third parties. These links are provided solely as a convenience to our visitors and do not constitute an endorsement of any third party resources or content. We reserve the right to terminate links with any third parties or other websites that are inappropriate or inconsistent with our website. The Lo-Down makes no representations about the content, functionality or practices of such third party sites and resources.


Production & Consulting Services

Lo-Down Productions LLC offers a wide range of media services, including website design, video production and media consulting. We produce small and large scale video projects, including advertisements, image spots, promotional videos, instructional tapes and web series’. For more information, email us at info@thelodownny.com or call 646-861-1805.

It is The Lo-Down’s policy to disclose, within the body of each story, whenever a client is the subject of a news article.  Presenting, Lo-Down Productions has an ongoing contract to provide consulting/web development services to Asian Americans for Equality, a non-profit organization.