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Gawker Media Potential Sale to News Corp

I just got an email from Duncan at Blog Herald that there are also rumors of Gawker Media being in talks with News Corp with the purchase of Gawker being the topic of conversation. He’s written about it at Gawker Media in Sales Talks. Unfortunately Blog Herald seems to be having server problems so I’m unsure what the substance of the story is apart from that Duncan says that his source is a good one.

Take it as rumor at this point but certainly an interesting one. I’m not sure it’s got as much credability as the WIN rumors to be honest.

Update: Looks like Duncan has his blog up and running again and the rumor is that News Corp is interested in the gossip blogs at Gawker more so than their others. It is certainly an interesting time for established blog network owners with this news, the rumored sale of Weblogs Inc and other networks being approached by VC investors.

Update II: I’ve done some digging around and the more I talk to people the more unlikely this story sounds. I’ve had a chat to some inside people and they deny it.

Also the more I think about it the more I doubt it – I mean can you imagine Fleshbot and Defamer etc in News Corp? Gawker is the edgey blog network – the one that prides itself on offending and breaking a few rules. Maybe my sources are just trying to put me off the scent – but I just can’t see it selling to News Corp or any other mainstream media outlet.

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Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Stuart says:

    Even before I finished reading your piece Darren I realised that there was some common ground between Newscorp and Gawker. Then I read the bit about the gossip blogs and I wasn’t surprised at all.

  2. Stuart says:

    And Rupert has been heard lately pontificating on the need for the news media to move with the times and engage their readership in dialogue.

  3. duncan says:

    Stuart
    Aside from the source its one of the other reasons I published it,it makes a lot of sense as well and seems logical. Also if we know that News Corp talked to Weblogs Inc they would have definately talked to Gawker. Hopefully I’ll find out some more soon.

  4. Omar says:

    Darren, Nick says his company is not for sale on his blog:
    http://www.nickdenton.org/002153.html

  5. lyndon says:

    News Corp are playing catch up on the web, they are going around and spending big bucks, so it’s likely. They publish the Sun here in the UK, which is basically tabloid trash so maybe it does fit.

    Corporations will always have a problem competing with single rabid bloogers – I being one – as we can turn on a dime and go off in any direction – this can be a problem too, but the big fat, bloated, white chip, tie wearing, corporation takes months of committee and meetings to make simple decisions.

    Bring it on Murdoch, we are waiting for you!

    hehe

  6. Loren Baker says:

    “Also the more I think about it the more I doubt it – I mean can you imagine Fleshbot and Defamer etc in News Corp? ”

    Hmmm… this is the company behind Joe Billionaire, When Animals Go Wild, Married with Children, The Family Guy, The Shield and Fox News…

    Despite it being a rumor, yes, I could imagine Fleshbot and Defamer as part of Fox Interactive given their cutting edge (Family Guy,Shield, 24) and sleazy (Joe Billionaire blow job scene, Fox News) television history.

  7. Mcintosh says:

    Darren, do you believe you should be writing about this seeing you yourself run a b/netork

    and you seem to be using your site as a focus group for your own needs. the blog herald also b5, has a post sourcing from you every 2-3 posts? and vica versa

    it’s like Bill Gates writing a fair review about OpenOffice

    every b/network owner is now probably dreaming of the millions they’ll make and by yours and duncans posts youre probably creaming yourslves.

    b/networks will neverwork

  8. duncan says:

    Darren
    my source said not the porn sites, yes, definately not fleshbot, but I’m still convinced that its true, mainly because of the source, but I’d also note it was an approach, I’ve got nothing to say it was anything more than this. Now I’d only wish someone would approach me and offer to buy the Blog Herald for a million dollars :-)

  9. Andy Merrett says:

    Sorry to be cynical, but The Sun UK “news”paper is owned by News Corp.

    > the one that prides itself on offending and breaking a few rules.

    sounds like the paper to me.

    A perfect fit.

    I know the context is different, but even so…

    Sun’s Denial of Service Attack
    Dudmanisms: Graham quotes today
    The Sun at it again: Breaking Geneva Convention?

    Not that I have anything against The Sun, of course. Ahem…

  10. Barry Bell says:

    Not true according to Denton…

    “For what it’s worth, Gawker isn’t for sale. The whole point about blogs is that they’re not part of big media. Consolidation defeats the purpose. It’s way too early.”

  11. Darren Rowse says:

    Mcintosh – I don’t think I have any conflict of interest here.

    I declare my interests – I try to blog as openly and honestly as I can about what I’m doing and what others are doing and I try to link not only to my own sites but others as freely as possible.

    In fact I probably link to my own sites less often than I would naturally do at times.

    ProBlogger is a blog about bloggers earning money – I think me writing about blog networks is part of that brief. I link to a variety of blog networks big and small – including some that some people would say are b5media’s competition.

    This blog is also about what I learn from blogging – if you’re a regular reader of this site you’ll see that I regularly share what I learn from my different blogs. Yes this does give those blogs some publicity along the way but I would suggest to you that the costs involved in telling my secrets are also present. You’ll see me talk a bit about some of these in my Disclaimer.

    In terms of Duncan – he and I linked to one another regularly well before we started doing business together. Again – since we started working together I think I’ve probably linked less to him. This is the first post I can see that i’ve linked to him in in 35 or so posts. How he chooses to link to me is his business.

    The reason we do link to each other has more to do with an overlapping topic than anything else in the same way that I link regularly to other bloggers like Jen from Jensense.

    In terms of b/networks ‘never working’ – I think you’ll find that there are a few blog network owners around who disagree with that – the Weblogs Inc guys being one of them :-)

  12. Darren Rowse says:

    Duncan – might have been an approach – my source said nothing of that – but I’d lay money on them not selling if there was one.

    Yep – some of you might have some points about News Corp being a better fit for Gawker than I give them ‘credit’ for. But I’d suggest they’d be more interested in other properties.

    I guess time will tell.

  13. Andy Merrett says:

    Darren can write about what he likes on his blog, McIntosh.

    As for blog networks “not working” – define “working” – it seems you only consider “making millions” as “working”.

  14. One thing’s for sure, b/network owners are repositioning themselves after today’s news and starting to revalue their properties. There’ll be a domino effect as the other mainstream media try to keep up, and b/networks attempt to cash in while their product is hot.

  15. Andy Merrett says:

    Yep, John, I’ve revalued Blue Fish and it’s monetary worth has doubled.

    Now it’s worth $0.10 ;-)

  16. True, Andy. If you divide $30m by 80 it comes to $375,000 per blog.

    I can announce that my two personal blogs, SYNTAGMA and SYNTAGMA 2.0 are now on the market for $750,000 dollars. I wonder if MSN would be interested?

  17. Anthony says:

    I didn’t see this as being a genuine acquisition rumour. It just didn’t seem right and it was way too close to the AOL/WIN merger. Just a nice bit of scuttlebutt to get the blogosphere excited.

    Also, Duncan and Darren, you guys will have to get used to perceived conflict of interest now with both of your involvement in b5media.

    It’s no different to mass media journalists who come under scrutiny when reporting on issues that COULD affect their parent company. People see ProBlogger and The Blog Herald as independent sources of information and your reader’s perception of a secret agenda when reading stories and posts no matter how open and ethical you two are will always exist.

  18. Jen says:

    Mcintosh, I find it ironic that an anonmous commenter would make accusations about the transparency and agendas of others.

Trackbacks

  1. links for 2005-10-06

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  2. [...] The Blog Herald reports the story here. Problogger speculates about a reported approach to Nick Denton’s Gawker Media from Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. [...]

  3. [...] Blog Herald and Problogger pick up on sources suggesting an approach to Nick Denton’s Gawker Media by the Murdoch giant News Corp. [...]