Gawker – Tommy Craggs, the executive editor of Gawker Media, and Max Read, the editor-in-chief of Gawker.com, are resigning from the company. In letters sent today, Craggs and Read informed staff members that the managing partnership’s vote to remove a controversial post about the CFO of Condé Nast—a unprecedented act endorsed by zero editorial employees—represented an indefensible breach of the notoriously strong firewall between Gawker’s business interests and the independence of its editorial staff. Under those conditions, Craggs and Read wrote, they could not possibly guarantee Gawker’s editorial integrity.
Memo from now-former executive editor Tommy Craggs:
“I’d learned of the vote via gchat with Heather Dietrick, who throughout the day was my only conduit to the partners, Nick Denton included. The only reply to my pleading emails about yanking the story was a sneering note from Gorenstein. That is to say, none of the partners in a company that prides itself on its frankness had the decency or intellectual wherewithal to make the case to the executive editor of Gawker Media for undermining (if not immolating) his job, forsaking Gawker’s too-often-stated, too-little-tested principles, and doing the most extreme and self-destructive thing a shop like ours could ever do.”
“All I got at the end of the day was a workshopped email from Denton, asking me to stay on and help him unfuck the very thing he’d colluded with the partners to fuck up.”
Memo from now-former Gawker.com editor-in-chief Max Read:
“On Friday a post was deleted from Gawker over the strenuous objections of Tommy and myself, as well as the entire staff of executive editors. That this post was deleted at all is an absolute surrender of Gawker’s claim to “radical transparency”; that non-editorial business executives were given a vote in the decision to remove it is an unacceptable and unprecedented breach of the editorial firewall, and turns Gawker’s claim to be the world’s largest independent media company into, essentially, a joke.”
“I am able to do this job to the extent that I can believe that the people in charge are able, when faced with difficult decisions, to back up their stated commitments to transparency, fearlessness, and editorial independence. In the wake of Friday’s decision and Tommy’s resignation I can no longer sustain that belief. I find myself forced to resign, effective immediately.”
This was the big story at the end of last week and, if you somehow missed it, the gist of the story is that Gawker outed publishing giant Conde Nast’s CFO David Geithner (and brother of former Secretary of the Treasury Tim Geithner) in his alleged attempt to pay a gay porn star for sex. The executive board for Gawker, composed mostly of business people, lawyer types, and founder Nick Denton, then opted to pull the article after the Internet rained hellfire down upon them and advertisers like Discover started pulling campaigns. Then the editorial people at Gawker rebelled and publicly condemned the decision and now, here we are, with the sky falling at an alarming rate for a site that often puffs its chest out for how independent and open it is about its place in modern online journalism.
There’s definitely a bit of karma here in the situation given that Gawker, a site that probably traffics in Internet outrage “Let’s rally and get everyone fired” pageviews as much as anyone, is falling apart because of the soft and constantly self-righteous attitude they’ve profited off of turning the Internet into. For years, Gawker has served as this hypocritical ombudsman of the Internet, racking up billions of pageviews starting as a site for reporting on things like what media people were fucking whom, then graduating to the bevy of athlete dick pics that was Deadspin a few years ago, to now fighting for their financial future in court because they somehow think a secretly filmed video of Hulk Hogan banging a shock jock’s wife is a freedom of the press issue instead of something just really fucking scummy. Any bad things coming for a company that seems to relish in being the Internet’s tattle tale hall monitor seems well-deserved.
But at the same time, for as sniveling and weaselly as some of the writers may be and how relatively screwed up it is they ran a 2,000 word article because some random dude in a publishing company’s executive office might like a little well-paid unclipped cock on the side, the editorial people are correct here and sum up the problem with Gawker: All they do is try to have their cake and eat it, too. They have Jezebel rallying against every feather soft indignation that a woman has ever experienced while they’re possibly destroying a married man’s life not because of corruption or helping the public but just because people will see a headline like that and click the hell out of it. At some point, you have to own what you are. For as much as it pains me to hear about “size 6 skinny jeans” every time Barstool gets in trouble online, Barstool is what it is. Our writers think different things and view the world in different ways but ultimately everyone’s opinion or jokes are their own and they can express them however they choose. You pay a price for believing in something instead of adapting everything you do to get more clicks at all costs.
So for Gawker to have presented itself just weeks ago in the Hulk Hogan lawsuit as one of the last bastions of unbiased, independent journalism only to cower down to the point that even their overly precious writing staff can’t believe what pussies they are in the face of public pressure…there’s poetry in that, even if it now means that honest journalism that makes people uncomfortable seems like it can no longer exist in 2015.
Plus if Hulk Hogan’s happy, I’m happy.
Gawker is a bunch of self self-righteous losers. For as much shit as we give you guys at barstool, you'd never set out to maliciously ruing someone's life. Fuck Gawker, hope they all lose their job.
Fuck Gawker, and all the other swill slinging brands they own.
Gawker is a bunch of self self-righteous losers. For as much shit as we give you guys at barstool, you’d never set out to maliciously ruing someone’s life. Fuck Gawker, hope they all lose their job.
Next time, write in normal people speak. I’m not trying to study for the SATs during my lunch hour pal.
What happened? Im not reading all that bullshit
Max Read has to be the best name for an editor ever.
speaking of not maliciously ruining someones life…wonder where Drebos is buried
Fuck Gawker, and all the other swill slinging brands they own.
Chief say when Gawker fly too close to sun, wing catch fire
Damn Spags, where will you get all your terrible content from now?!
what the hell is gawker? and why should i care?
With the exception to Brady gate, barstool has owned every mistake they ever made. You guys don’t act like little babies when fuck ups happen. Like I said, with the exception of bradygate.
The existence of Dell nudes and lack of smiles on my face is Exhibit A why Barstool has some credibility on not simply being a mercenary character-assassination site.
Also short of writing a blog about how cool ISIS is, following anything with that Hogan video gets me every goddamned time.
Looks like there’s gonna be some job openings for you spags!
Good. Every one of those motherfuckers should be sued into oblivion. To say what they did is inexcusable is an understatement.
cant wait til you to get busted creeping on a gay porn star
@rogerdom, I second that. Book learnin was never a strong suit for me.
Started reading and became uninterested almost immediately. You literally blog the worst shit.
@maritime he’s actually posting under the Blackbeard usernames, classic Drebos
how can you even call this a spags blog with no link to a dick pic
@rogerdorn so barstool actually uses legitimate English for once and you’re mad that you didn’t get a break in the middle of the article to look at a pair of tits. Fuck off.
Gawker and Rolling Stone need to die.
why did they have 20 articles on whether they were going to unionize? And who gives a flying fuck if 2 people quit. Talk about self righteous squids. NOBODY CARES DIPSHITS!!
First of all, Spags, you are the best writer a Barstool and the site is 100 times better for you being a party of it.
Second, I love reading Gawker sites to see what the other side is up to. I find those writers and commenters to be only a little more annoying that the BSS writers and commenters but from the opposite corner of the universe.
That being said, it is too funny watching them dump all over each other (as Spags mentioned). Whiney liberals being righteously indignant at each other is one of the most gratifying things on earth.
@rogerdorn if you didn’t think that was normal speak, you’re a fucking retard and I hate most of spags blogs too. Great blog here though.
You did an excellent job breaking this down, Spags. From a guy who was looking to get caught up on all this Gawker hysteria, thanks.
Hilarious that manchild smut blogger Portnoy has more integrity than these legitimate companies
Very well done
The adults sent the children to thier rooms, so the children are going to run away
Gawker sucks but you saying “our bloggers think different things” must be hard to defend when you all post the same articles over and over.
Yo that last “paragraph” is all one, long ass sentence you fuck.
I just like Gawker because they spell words correctly have have a better comments section. Zero shame admitting this site is a fucking zoo of wild bastard animals who belong in a fucking cage.
I think I speak for all the barstool degenerate liberals when I say: HAHAHAHAHA. Those shit heads trivialize every fucking thing. Next up: Jezebel.
Hated you when you first arrived but you’re the most informed and entertaining writer on here now.
Get em spags
Whatever Gawker writers get paid it isn’t enough to make up for having to look over your shoulder the rest of your life. One of those assholes is going to get murdered one day.
its pretty insane that these self involved, self important fucks think that this is a journalstic integrity issue. Writing a hit piece on a guy for hiring a prostitute is not news. It’s not journalism, its high school gossip bullshit. The “editors” can spare me the outrage, they are working for a lesser publication than People and US Weekly and their content is not news at all.
Hulk hogan in band?
gawker ? there was one ,,,,,,,,,,,,?
The people who comment on Gawker articles are straight up losers. They think they’re so fucking witty and clever with all their dumb little jokes and references. Fuck that website.
Spags went a lil hard on defending gay sex, you trying to tell us something?
legit good blog, spags. not what i come to barstool for but doesn’t hurt every once in a while.
@accstoolie Alicia Lynch would disagree.
@accstoolie https://m.facebook.com/barstoolsportsboston/posts/10151632409602502 Sunil Tripathi would also disagree. Probably best to just never high horse guys…
Used to love Deadspin for Drew Magary articles. Then I hated Deadspin but still went there for Magary. Now I can’t visit any gawker site because it’s all coated in liberal jizz.
Fuck them all. Take them to the ground and salt it.
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