As plenty of people probably know by now, Gawker has lost several senior staff members over the past week or so, including managing editor Choire Sicha (which is pronounced “Cory Seeka” in case you’re wondering — I know I was) and writer Emily Gould. There is plenty of commentary around about why they left, including some coverage at Women’s Wear Daily, and from my friend, the lovely and talented Rachel Sklar at The Huffington Post.

What I found interesting was that both Sicha and Gould said that it was the style of writing at Gawker that they couldn’t take any more. In the WWD piece, for example, Sicha says:

“I just feel like, now that everyone sort of operates at the speed we do, who’s actually going to do the stuff that takes some time or some reading?…Everything has become knee-jerk like we are.”

And Emily Gould says:

“Whatever Gawker originally set out to do, it kind of did, and now it just feels over… I don’t want to say the meanest thing or the most shocking thing possible anymore, because it gets so old and so soul-killing. There is stuff I really care about. I’m not interested in tearing it down as much as describing it.”

Could this mean that the quick-shot, snarky remark or sarcastic rejoinder is not the be-all and end-all of Web media? I hope so. Not that sites like TMZ or The Superficial and Gawker aren’t fun — but everything can’t be them. In case you’re interested, there’s more coverage of the Gawker situation in the New York Times, including a nice roundup here.

At Portfolio magazine, media writer Jacob Bercovici says Gawker is a “monster” that has turned on Denton and is eating him, and Vimeo founder Jakob Lodwick has some helpful tips for Nick Denton. For his part, Jason Calacanis compares Denton to Grendel and Gollum (why don’t you just say what you really think, Jason?).

About the author

Mathew 2414 posts

I'm a Toronto-based former senior writer with Gigaom and my favorite things to write about are social technology, media and the evolution of online behavior

6 Responses to “Gawker: Is it the end of snark?”
  1. […] wrote about Gawker recently, after the site’s top writers left — including Choire Sicha and Emily Gould. Both said they were tired of the incessant snarking […]

  2. […] wrote about Gawker recently, after the site’s top writers left — including Choire Sicha and Emily Gould. Both said they were tired of the incessant snarking […]

  3. […] The New York Times has a piece in Sunday on Gawker, and how it may have “jumped the snark.” It’s a look at some of the turmoil that the site has seen in recent weeks — including the departure of writer Richard Morgan after just one day, and the sudden resignations by former editor Choire Sicha and writer Emily Gould not that long ago. […]

  4. […] The New York Times has a piece in Sunday on Gawker, and how it may have “jumped the snark.” It’s a look at some of the turmoil that the site has seen in recent weeks — including the departure of writer Richard Morgan after just one day, and the sudden resignations by former editor Choire Sicha and writer Emily Gould not that long ago. […]

  5. Try irony instead. It's harder to achieve but it opens a much richer world.

  6. Try irony instead. It's harder to achieve but it opens a much richer world.

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