Nick Denton’s little publishing empire often doesn’t get the credit deserved. Among the new media ops, click-whores like Business Insider, BuzzFeed, and Huffington Post grab the spotlight. But their granddaddy, Gawker Media, knows better 13 years since its founding—literally three lifetimes as measured in online publishing. Forget dog years. Denton’s shop is ancient, and it thrives by reincarnating in place. The Gawker in 2015 bears little resemblance to the circa 2002—Hell, even 2013. That’s a good thing.
What I always liked about the new media property: Application of newspaper-like editorial ethics for getting scopes, sourcing stories, and producing original content to online news gathering. All the while writing is current and cantankerous, and editors experiment with different design, content production, and stylistic strategies. Stated differently: Gawker is the best of print tabloid journalism applied to online publishing. Bottom-feeding aggregators that imitate the tabloid headline style, and dong so grope pageviews, are piss-poor imitations.