Will Blog For Food

by | Sep 30, 2004

“Supposedly cosmopolitan, San Francisco is in fact a collection of separatist ghettos. Mexicans live in the Mission, Gays live in the Castro, Chinese out in Sunset, and transient yuppies in the Marina; and they avoid each other as much as possible. The city is entirely lacking in glamour. The old money is inbred, and the new money is too geeky. The pretty people are in Los Angeles or Miami; the intellectuals are in New York; and the carpetbaggers left as quickly as they came.” -Nick Denton


Outspoken Oxford grad, Nick Denton, is a former journalist and currently king of his very own nanopublishing empire. In short, he’s the man responsible for Gawker, Wonkette, Fleshbot, Defamer, and Kinja. That is, he is the publisher, not the writer. He hires writers. Notably, Choire Sicha and Ana Marie Cox*, of Gawker and Wonkette fame respectively. Elizabeth Spiers was the first Gawker writer, until traditional media swooped in. Now she works for New York Magazine.

Denton appeared on my radar last spring when this Wired article arrived in my mailbox. The timing was especially interesting, as I had recently advised CenterStage, Chicago’s indie-owned entertainment site, on the need for a blog. I contributed to this effort for a time, but stopped shortly thereafter, realizing that I was the wrong blogger for the job.

Now, there’s another opportunity to be a paid blogger. Denton’s chief rival, Jason Calacanis, founder of Weblogs, Inc. is looking for a blogger to take on the advertising beat. Basically, what Denton and Calacanis are up to is carving out, and then capitalizing on, a highly defined niche for each blog they create. Which is smart, especially when the objective is ad revenue. The blog you are reading now is not laser-like. I write here about several topics. Should I ever devote myself to one topic, my traffic would surely increase. But, I do not blog for more traffic. I blog because I have something to say. Of course, should Calacanis bring me onboard, I will focus on the ad world with laser-like intensity. Sounds like fun.

*Cox, a native Nebraskan (like me), reportedly just inked a deal for a book, film, and TV show. This according to Calacanis. You go girl.