Today Erin Pettigrew announced the total traffic Gawker Media has generated in little more than 7 years. Nick Denton announced the first Gawker blog, Gizmodo, on August 14th 2002, some weeks after Peter Rojas started the blog with 6 daily entries. Denton called it a low-risk experiment and wanted to know if someone could make a living from blogging.
I have no idea how much Gizmodo can bring in revenues. All I know is that weblogs are a compelling form, gadget addicts are all online, and Amazon.com’s API makes it easy to connect product with content.
Most importantly, this is a low-risk commercial experiment. Most media companies suffer from overblown editorial, an ad sales force with padded expense accounts, and overly complex publishing systems with a team of primadonna sysadmins to maintain it. By contrast, Gizmodo will be a couple of hours a day of Pete’s link-picking skills, some automatically generated Amazon.com links, and $150-worth of Movable Type. Media has never before been this lean.
Since the start of Gizmodo, one can only admire the success of Gawker Media and must admit that Denton has done everything right, and the numbers are impressive. Gawker Media consists of 8 blogs and drove 350 million pageviews last month, with more than 20 million unique visitors.
In the last 2 years Gawker Media has sold Wonkette, Idolator, Gridskipper and The Consumerist and rolled both Valleywag and Defamer in to the main property, Gawker.