So suggested New York magazine when they first pitched their recent profile of the Gawker Media overlord to Denton himself. That’s what Denton told The New Yorker’s John Cassidy, who follows up today on fellow New Yorker scribe Ben McGrath’s competing Nick Denton profile.
But Cassidy argues that Gawker media still has quite a ways to go before it reaches proportions that might warrant a News Corp. comparison.
A few reasons:
- Gawker Media’s traffic is growing rapidly, but some old media sites “appear to be growing faster” and are doing a better job at “converting page views to advertising dollars.”
- The “cost inflation” of paying the amount of staffers it takes to grow Gawker’s audience “is unlikely to stop.”
- As more distribution companies start walling off their content, Gawker sites may find themselves with not enough material to link to.
- “Finding a suitable deep-pocketed partner” that can pump a bunch of cash into Gawker “might not be as easy as some observers are suggesting.”
In conclusion, Cassidy writes:
As an admirer of his enterprise, and as somebody who shares some (but not all) of his strictures about the old-style American publishing industry, I will be watching his next move with interest. Like Murdoch, he is a savvy operator who prides himself on his detachment and shouldn’t be underestimated. But that’s where the comparisons should stop. For now, at least, Uncle Rupert can sleep soundly in his bed.
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