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Posts Tagged ‘Gabriel Snyder’

Changes At The Gawker Masthead

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This week has seen some major changes over at Nick Denton‘s premiere site, Gawker.com. First off: Managing Editor Gabriel Snyder is out after 18 months at the job. In a memo to the staff, Snyder sniffed that he’d be “canned” after leaving the West Coast and writing for The Observer to come work for Denton. Snyder’s replacement will be Remy Stern, the founder of Cityfile.com, which Denton has also acquired. Interesting choice, since Cityfile and Gawker would have at one point seemed to overlap in their respective goals, but as Gawker has widened itself from a New York-centric blog to a more global outreach, Cityfile’s acquisition could represent Denton’s desire to hang on to the old Gawker stake in Manhattan drama. Denton’s official reason for buying up Cityfile was, as he told The Wall Street Journal, “to compete more effectively with reference sites. We and they are in a battle for position in Google search results.”

Meanwhile Weekends Editor Foster Kamer will be leaving his post to take a new position writing with Roy Edroso at The Village Voice‘s Runnin’ Scared blog starting March 1st. Kamer will also be leaving his (week)day job of associate editor at BlackBook. Foster announced his departure on Twitter, claiming it had nothing to do with Snyder being fired and we believe him…we’ve been hearing rumors of The Voice not-so-subtly courting the 25-year old wunderkind for weeks now.

Read More: Gawker Finds Itself in the Spotlight — Wall Street Journal

Shafrir, Lawson To Return To Gawker

ggg.jpgAs revealed by TheAwl.com yesterday, and confirmed by Gawker editor-in-chief Gabriel Snyder via Twitter, it looks like Doree Shafrir will be returning to Nick Denton‘s empire in the New Year.

TV writer Richard Lawson will be back, too, Snyder tweeted. He left Gawker earlier this year to work for TV.com.

Shafrir left Gawker in 2007 to join The New York Observer, but was among those let go from the paper in June.

Could these decisions to return to the blog have anything to do with Gawker’s recent decision to offer its writers full-time employment and benefits?

Doree Returns (To Gawker) –TheAwl

Previously: Gawker Offers Writers Full-Time Employment

More On Gawker Media’s Full-Time Status

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Monday morning Nick Denton announced that for the first time ever, Gawker Media writers would have the opportunity to become full-time employees instead of freelancers. Ostensibly good news in this wintery publishing climate, where benefits like health insurance (and even unemployment) are a thing of the past. Sheila McClear, a former Gawker editor who successfully went to court to get unemployment from Gawker told Fishbowl “I congratulate them for going legit.” Sheila is speaking of course, about the common practice for blogs (and most other media these days) to use use freelancers and permalancers in editorial roles so as not to have to dole out benefits or pay the 15% tax for full-time employees.

Many are speculating why Denton finally made the switch: certainly it doesn’t help him financially to pay writers as full-time employees, but it does make an appealing draw to Gawker for heavy-hitting journalists who may not have been willing to work under the previous conditions. Also speculated is that having full-time employees filed under 1099 status is technically illegal, and Denton may have finally gotten in some hot water with the IRS over unpaid taxes. We reached out to Gawker Media and asked them exactly what the terms and conditions of for the new W2 employees are.

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Why “Self-Destructive” LA Times Writer Is Better Suited For Gawker

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Richard Rushfield (center) Photo via FishbowlLA

Richard Rushfield is one of the few West Coasters that are still kept on Gawker‘s payroll. Hell, even Gabriel Snyder had to move back to New York to take the job as managing editor of the online publication. And if that doesn’t make him an outlier enough, Rushfield actually quit The Los Angeles Times (and no, that’s not code for “got fired by Sam Zell” or “took a buyout package”) to take on the role of a full-time blogger. Now he has a book out called Don’t Follow Me, I’m Lost, about what some would call was his counter-intuitive switch from mainstream to digital media.

Our colleagues over at FishbowlLA had a chance to sit down with Rushfield and pin him down on why he left an editor’s job to work at a blog. From their interview, we’ve hypothesized three theories on what makes Rushfield so well suited for the blogosphere.

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One Last Thought On Robert Novak|Newsday Rejects Ad Chastising Parent Co.|Time Inc. Buys Detroit Home|More Reaction To Reader’s Digest Ch. 11 News|Is Anyone Profiting From Gawker’s Threesome Video?

FishbowlDC: One final thought about Robert Novak‘s death today: “There’s no question if you walked out of here and I dropped dead, my obit would probably have [the Plame affair] in the lede.”

New York Times: Cablevision-owned Newsday has rejected an ad by the Tennis Channel chastising the cable provider for not carrying the network.

Detroit Free Press: Time Inc. has purchased a house in Detroit’s West Village that will serve as the media company’s home base as it covers the Michigan city’s struggles to survive the recession.

Paid Content: More reactions to the news that Reader’s Digest Association will likely file for Chapter 11.

Mediaite: The NSFW Eric Dane-Rebecca Gayheart threesome video is racking up big page views for Gawker. But since Nick Denton reinstated page view bonuses at the Web media company, is anyone profiting from the onslaught of clicks? Unfortunately, the popular post’s writer, Gabriel Snyder, is Gawker’s managing editor, so he’s not eligible for the page view bonus, although he will get a bonus for overall increased traffic to the site.

WaPo Writer’s Gawker Experience Raises Questions Of Fair Use

wapo.pngWe feel a bit guilty blogging about this right now, fearing that it will just add fuel to the fire raging over blogs (like this one) that draw information and quotes from stories in news sources like The Washington Post. But thanks to an article in the Post this weekend, the wound is open and raw, so we have to at least let you know what’s been going on.

Yesterday, Post writer Ian Shapira wrote about his experience when Gawker picked up an article he wrote for the paper early last month about a business coach who explains millennials to baby boomers. At first, Shapira was excited by Gawker’s take on his article. “I confess to feeling a bit triumphant…I was flattered,” he wrote.

Then, an email from his editor changed his mind: “But when I told my editor, he wrote back: They stole your story. Where’s your outrage, man?”

Shapira goes on to discuss the amount of work that went into his 1,500-word story that, although not “Pulitzer material” still required hours of travel, interviews, note-taking, transcribing and writing. You know, all the work that goes into any piece of journalism that is not merely a rehashing of someone else’s story. Was it fair of Gawker to rip the story from the pages of the Post and steal Shapira’s thunder? Right or wrong, it’s become common practice on news blogs.

And so, the debate continues.

Updated with Gawker’s reply. Read on.

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CyberFrequencies Interview With Nikki Finke

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Queena Kim and Tanya Jo Miller interview Nikki Finke. They mention Sharon Waxman‘s estimate of her selling her site for $14 million. Gawker’s Managing Editor Gabriel Snyder is also on this episode.

Listen here.

Why I Followed Andrew Sullivan to the Financial District

It’s sort of fitting that my last FBNY post should be about The Atlantic dinner/conversation I attended earlier this evening, which featured Michael Hirschorn and Andrew Sullivan, since this post was actually my first foray into this whole blogging thing (and remains my top Google result).

The talk — the dinner part included chili, cornbread, and brownies — was billed in the invite as “A Conversation on the Future of Media” and the crowd that packed Justin Smith‘s downtown apartment included a whole lot of very recognizable New York Media names who will no doubt be heavily involved in that very Future. Here’s a non-exhaustive list: Bonnie Fuller, Harry Smith, Richard Perez-Pena, Nick Denton, Tad Friend, Duff McDonald, Gabriel Snyder, Jeff Bercovici, Matt Haber, Danny Shea, Brian Stelter, Rachel Sklar, Jon Fine, Dylan Stableford, Laurel Touby, James Bennett…and also, strangely(?), (the very tall) Sigourney Weaver.

Alas, neither Sullivan nor Hirschorn appeared to have any definite ideas about what ‘Media’ might look in the future other than that it would probably be very different from what we currently have, but also that the New York Times is in a lot of trouble. For those of you keeping score Andrew Sullivan still reads the dead tree edition of the Times every morning and does not Twitter. @LaurelTouby, @BrianStelter, and @RachelSklar, however, all have nice tweets from the party. Now(!), before I sign off for good here’s a couple of other interesting things I read today:

  • Choire speculating on, among other things, the equality of words.
  • Chris Lehmann talking about his “crash course in the staggering unselfawareness of Manhattan class privilege.”
  • Gay Talese, who is described solely in this article as “an author who writes on the sex trade.” Ahem.

  • Garry Trudeau on journos “Smitten With The Idea Of A Personal Broadcasting System” Also, Twitter’s greatest hits…and misses.

  • This, for reasons which will become clear at some point tomorrow.
  • And this, because it’s had me laughing all day. The video in the top corner of this post, by the way, is purely for the enjoyment of my managing editor Rebecca Fox, and for the edification of my Menu cohort Steve Krakauer.
  • Sharon Waxman Skewers Nick Denton, Internet

    gawkessrshot.jpgSharon Waxman takes aim at Snarker-in-chief Nick Denton (which we get) as well as the flight of talented journalists to the Internet (which we don’t get).

    As she says:

    “And while I’m at it, let me publicly lament the flight of
    talented colleagues, Jeff Leeds of the Times and Gabriel Snyder, once of Variety, to the world of celebrity infotainment, and the kingdom of snark, respectively. Leeds, one of the best music journalists working (or, rather, not working) has gone to Buzznet, where he will be the editor-in-chief. Snyder becomes managing editor at Gawker. Like other journalists, they have to eat, so one can hardly blame them. But their joining the world of lowest-common-denominator-clicks makes those of us seekers in the world of information-that-matters the poorer.”

    Is it really impossible to think that journalists like Leeds and Snyder could elevate the level of journalism at these sites? Whose snarky now?

    Nick Denton: ‘I Felt I’d Done My Job’

    14_dentondd_lgl.jpgOur sister site, Agency Spy has an interview today with Gawker‘s Nick Denton about the recent layoffs, hires and rehires. One of the most interesting aspects of the Gawker changes has been Denton finding a replacement for himself as managing editor.

    As Agency Spy has it:

    Matt: On your managing editor replacement, Gabriel Snyder; Why have you chosen to replace yourself? Gabriel has an independent attitude/style. How involved to you plan to be in editorial?

    Denton: I felt I’d done my job. Monthly pageviews on Gawker.com have gone from 8m in December to 24m last month. And I’d announced after Labor Day that I was finally looking for a replacement. My tenure was supposed to be much shorter! And I have just a few other responsibilities.

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