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Gawker and Weblogs show us where media is headed


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October 07, 2005

Gawker and Weblogs show us where media is headed

Stephen Baker

Gawker and Weblogs Inc. are cashing in on the fever surrounding blogs. Weblogs sells to AOL, Gawker signs a distribution deal in Europe. But their success doesn't mean much for millions of other bloggers. Instead, it shows us that the blog world is a promising place for media entrepreneurs.

Gawker's Gizmodo and Weblogs' Engadget are new media magazines. They have wide readership, lightning fast editorial processes, and a format that invites interactivity. What's more, they operate in a lively and fast-growing sphere that pulsates with buzz and propagates links by the millions. As a publisher, what's not to like about that?

This is a new form of mainstream media. This isn't to say that millions of other blogs won't develop their own economic success. But that will likely be grounded in micropublishing and ultra-targeted advertising. It's a different story altogether.

I look at Gizmodo and Engadget as a sign of what's coming in mainstream journalism. As these two worlds converge, more and more journalists will be sitting at the breakfast table blogging, just as I am now. Some will have bosses, others will be on their own. Most of them, I'm betting, will have to buy their own health insurance.

07:17 AM

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I have to point to this article in today's ClickZ in which Calcanis claims to have sold Weblogs Inc. in the interest of the business, as demand for ad inventory far exceeded supply. (I can think of worse problems.)

Fair enough, but Nick Denton of Gawker criticizes Calcanis for taking our beloved underground medium mainstream with his business expansion move. Now, call me crazy, but didn't Gawker just sign a licensing deal with VNU? Did they not recently sport a blog-wide sponsorship of Kathy Griffin's show? And did they not, about a year ago, partner with Nike?

I understand that Gawker's moves kept the blogs in the blogosphere and out of the mainstream, but we're all in business here, and they're both in the game for green. Isn't this really the pot calling the kettle black?

Here's that article: http://www.clickz.com/news/article.php/3554496

Posted by: Aimee at October 7, 2005 12:42 PM

The AOL/MSN deal could be BIG, and this could be AOL pricing itself upwards...

slopmarketing.blogspot.com

Posted by: slopmaster at October 7, 2005 08:00 PM


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