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June 1, 2009

Gawker’s Bloody Miss, A Hit After All?

I’ve been watching the BloodCopy debacle for some time. BloodCopy is a new blog in the Gawker Media blog network, about vampired. Problem is, it is a big ad in itself, the whole blog is a HBO promo for the TV series True Blood.

There’s disclosure, hidden away in the Gawker Media footer. There’s no “sponsored post” text or anything. The campaign is, at the very least, balancing along the edge of what is deemed OK within the blogosphere.

We’d better get used to it. read more

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May 21, 2009

Nick Denton Believes In Content

The king of Gawker Media, Nick Denton, is featured in an interview over at Ad Age. Naturally, a lot of the focus is on advertising revenue and the fact that Denton doomed it last year, and then did well enough after all. While online revenue for a blog network like Gawker Media is interesting, this caught my eye:

If a good exclusive used to provide 10 times the traffic of a standard regurgitated blog post, now it garners a hundred times as much. That should be reassuring to people. The content market is finding its new balance. Original reporting will be rewarded.

Denton then goes on and talks about recent strategic hires to strengthen the voice of the network’s key titles. Content is king yet again, eh?

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May 14, 2009

Ex-Jezebeler Does Womens Blog For Slate

Double XDouble X is a new blog – sorry, web magazine – for women, or at least that’s what they’re aiming at, spun out of Slate blog The XX Factor. Jessica Grose, of Jezebel fame, is the managing editor, and she founded the new venture along with author Meghan O’Rourke and journalist Hanna Rosin.

Double X takes the Slate and XX Factor sensibility and applies it to sexual politics, fashion, parenting, health, science, sex, friendship, work-life balance, and anything else you might talk about with your friends over coffee. We tackle subjects high and low with an approach that’s unabashedly intellectual but not dry or condescending.

So says the about page, and while we’ll see how well this will be executed, chances are the founding trio, along with the rest of the staff, will manage well enough. After all, this isn’t the first blog they’re running.

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May 11, 2009

The Gawker Media Demo Reel

If you’re a blog network like Gawker Media, mixing rumors and news with celebrity stalking and snarky commentary, you need a demo reel to go with it. Luckily, enough people have spoken out against the network blogs, and they have been featured in a fair share of popular culture TV shows (you missed the Californication Gawker mugshot, guys!) to make for an interesting video. read more

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John Mahoney Leaves Gizmodo For Space

Or science at least, as you’ll find him on Popular Science from now on, incidentally his previous employer it seems. He’ll act as editor on the PopSci.com site, which should be an interesting gig. Check out the goodbye post on Gizmodo for space jokes and more.

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May 10, 2009

MTV Multiplayer Falls Silent Yet Again

The MTV Multiplayer blog is silent once again, as writer Tracey John leaves. You might remember that Stephen Totilo moved to competetitor Kotaku which put the blog on hiatus, then it rolled back out with updates from contributor Tracey John. And now he’s gone too, hinting that something’s going on but nothing more than that.

And I encourage the industry and gamers to continue to support MTV Multiplayer and the new editor when the blog is back in full force. Exciting things are in the works — just you wait. Thanks for being so patient.

This is a bad move. It is way better to just put a blog on hiatus and offer some sort of notification solution for its reader, rather than being this vague about what’s happening. The editorial group on MTV.com really need to get its act together. They are hurting the brand with this nonsense.

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May 2, 2009

Owen Thomas Leaves Valleywag

I’m reading that Valleywag ring leader Owen Thomas is leaving the site, which is really nothing more than a column on Gawker these days, to work at NBC. Ryan Tate, the now former night editor, is taking Thomas’ place, and Duncan Riley thinks he’ll do OK. Best of luck to everyone involved.

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April 27, 2009

MTV Multiplayer Videogame Blog On Hiatus

Popular, and sometimes breaking, videogame blog MTV Multiplayer has put itself on hiatus as lead writer Stephen Totilo is no longer working with it. He explains the decision like this:

Because April 24 is my last day, and because our search for the best team to continue Multiplayer is underway but not yet complete, we’re putting the blog on hiatus.

In other words, you haven’t seen the last of MTV Multiplayer, but it’ll take some time to get it rolling again. Poor planning perhaps, but that’s the way it is sometimes.

Incidentally, I’d like to point you to Totilo’s second to last post about why he became a gaming journalist. It is an interesting read.

So where did Totilo go? From one videogame blog to another: He is now Deputy Managing Editor on Gawker Media’s Kotaku.

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April 21, 2009

Former Gawkers Launch The Awl

The AwlChoire Sicha and Alex Balk, two former Gawker editors, have decided to venture out on their own. The Awl is their creation, a not so pretty blog at the moment. The welcome post is nothing to get excited about, but the about page tells the story a bit more thorough:

It was birthed from the following thoughts: What if there were a website that zippily surveyed a wealth of resonant, weird, important, frightening, amusing bits of news and ideas? And what if it weren’t totally clogged with reality show linkbait?

I’m surprised to see that Gawker doesn’t go all snarky and silly on the launch. But then again, how could they, with Sicha and Balk starting off by posting the Gawker Media HQs layout, and then completing with their own?

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March 4, 2009

Gawker Media’s February: Really Good Actually

Blog network Gawker Media apparently had a great February, up as much as a fifth from last year, according to a leaked email from Nick Denton to the staff. Denton naturally doesn’t want to get overly optimistic, especially since he’s made so many changes the last few months to his network.

February 2009 wasn’t nearly as dreadful as it could have been. A lot of sites struck traffic records — including io9, Gawker, Deadspin, Jalopnik and Jezebel. In total, we drew 297m pageviews — some 34% over last February’s level and 50% up if you account for the sites we spun off in the meantime. Comments — so much improved in the last year — grew even more rapidly. Now that Defamer has been consolidated under Gawker, we don’t have a single weak site.

It seems like niche is king in these days of economic turmoil.

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