Ditch Media Ltd.

The online news outlet OntheDitch.com is independently owned by Ditch Media Limited and - legally - is not directly connected with any other companies. Ditch Media Limited was established in August 2021 for the express purpose of creating a legal vehicle for the OntheDitch.com website which had begun publishing stories four months earlier in April 2021. The news outlet has been a member of the Press Council of Ireland since 2022.

That said, there have been extensive overlaps between OnTheDitch,com and the Web Summit organisation. Two of the three founders - editor Eoghan McNeill and journalist Roman Shortall - were employees of the Web Summit at the point when OnTheDitch.com commenced operations. Furthermore the establishment of OnTheDitch.com appears to have been at least partially motivated by the frustration of one of its original shareholders, Chay Bowes and that of the individual who appears to be the main source of its funding, then Web Summit CEO, Paddy Cosgrave, with the clientalist nature of the Irish political sphere. 

As of 2023, Ditch Media Limited has not filed a financial statement with the Companies Records Office so its revenues are not entirely clear. Although in a June 2021 interview with the London Times, co-founder Chay Bowes expressed the expectation that the OnTheDitch.ie would operate behind a paywall, in practice the website has been entirely free since its inception. OnTheDitch.com does invite direct support from its readers but access is not conditional on this. According to Roman Shortall, a series of stories relating to the state planning board did generate donations from “the corporate world, lawyers and accountants”. However, until November 2023 it appears that OnTheDitch.com was largely funded by the Web Summit (Paddy Cosgrave’s organisation). Eoghan McNeill confirmed this in an interview on RTE Radio in April 2023, adding that he expected that the news outlet would receive a further €1m from the same source in the five years up to 2028. 

However, in October 2023, Paddy Cosgrave was effectively forced to step down as Web Summit CEO when his comments on the Israeli response to the October 7th attacks on Israel by Hamas, prompted a number of leading tech firms to announce that they would not be attending the organisation’s November 2023 event in Lisbon. Cosgrave’s stepping back had knock-on consequences for TheDitch.ie’s funding. On November 7 2023 the Web Summit announced that it was withdrawing all funding from Ditch Media Limited with immediate effect and that the Web Summit legal counsel, Adam Connon had disposed of his 33.3% share in the company (although this is not yet reflected in any filing to the Companies Registration Office). The Web Summit decision was clearly motivated by concern to distance itself from any kind of language that was critical of Israeli actions in Gaza and which had certainly been a feature of TheDitch.ie’s editorial line. In a press release announcing the cutting of ties, the Web Summit stressed that TheDitch.ie was “a separate organisation with its own editorial control and its views do not represent those of Web Summit.” Where this leaves OnTheDitch.com’s finances is not yet clear.

Key facts

Legal Form

Private Limited Company


Individual Owner

Media Outlets

General Information

Affiliated Interests Founder

Roman Shortall

Editor-in-Chief, Co-Founder and 33% owner of The Ditch.




71 Lower Baggot St

Dublin 2


Tax/ ID Number

CRO No. 701550

Financial Information

Revenue (Financial Data/ Optional)

Missing Data

Operating Profit (in Mill. $)

Missing Data

Advertising (in % of total funding)

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Executive Board

Missing Data

  • Project by
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    Global Media Registry
  • In cooperation with
    Co-funded by European Union