Nick Denton: Gawker Media is Unacquirable

Posted on November 4, 2005

Gawker founder Nick Denton doesn't see his network of blogs as a good fit for a mainstream media company. A recent OJR article about a new online media bubble has a quote from Denton who says Gawker is both not for sale and unacquirable.

Nick Denton, publisher of Gawker Media, doesn't believe there's really been a big rush of VC money or Big Media interest in blog publishing. He told me Gawker's blogs would cease doing what they do best if they were bought by a mainstream media company.

"Put the Gawker titles in a media conglomerate and they would spontaneously combust," Denton said via e-mail. "Imagine, for instance, how AOL Time Warner would handle the X-rated party photos in yesterday's Fleshbot, or a snide report on Defamer about the latest dross from Warner Brothers, or Gawker's borderline libelous mockery of [Time Warner CEO] Dick Parsons. Without media conglomerates as targets, the Gawker titles would have no purpose. Gawker is not for sale but it is, more importantly, and in a deeper sense, unacquirable.

Denton may be right about there not being a big rush of money into blogging but he would be wrong that there is no "Big Media interest" -- countless of mainstream media websites have added blogs this year and some newspapers now have ten or twenty blogs. Some modification of the blogs in the Gawker network would likely be made by any mainstream media acquirer.

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