marketing to millennials
This morning, The Awl announced that Matt Buchanan and John Herrman will take over running the site, which will, after five years in “public beta,” finally get a redesign.
The Awl, nothing if not consistent in its conversational/clever, take-it-or-leave-it tone, wrote the announcement in a FAQ format under the overline ”Website Discusses Itself.”
You may have read this on a website today: The Goldbergs is a new sitcom about Jews in the 1980s that premieres tonight.
A couple of weeks ago, in the doldrums of August, the Wall Street Journal revealed that there are people (Manhattanites, obviously) who are actually willing to pay money for their dogs to learn to use iPads. Well, the hard-nosed investigative reporters at Today.com have uncovered the rest of the story, complete with video.
The first book by Choire Sicha, a former editor at Gawker and The New York Observer, is, according to its subtitle, “an entirely factual account.” The book, titled Very Recent History, follows “John,” no last name, as he frets over his finances. He meets his co-workers at a bar and announces, “Drinksies!” whenever he’s ready for another round. He sleeps with—or talks about wanting to sleep with—numerous young men in his social milieu, one of whom “had huge ears and skin like a glass of milk and was pretty.” Meanwhile, the company where John works—“a corporate entity that was privately owned” and does not earn “more than they spent”—is undergoing a personnel change. John’s boss, “Thomas,” and the unnamed owner of the company—who eventually marries “a princess, of sorts, though technically she was becoming her own king”—“did not particularly get along, although they said they did to anyone who asked.” The owner fires the cleaning lady. Thomas leaves the company and is replaced by “Timothy,” who attempts to run the business with his second in command, “Jacob,” who both eventually leave. John also leaves, to work once more with Thomas at a different company. Amid all these transactions, John falls in love with “Edward,” and the book works up to a climax in which the two men can—finally and without distraction—spend some time alone together. The book’s thesis arrives quite early, though. Sex, money, employment, friendship, love: “Almost everything in the City was capital.”
They grow up so fast. The Awl network, which was founded by Gawker alums Choire Sicha and Alex Balk back in 2009 and now includes five sites on topics ranging from adorkable women to money, is looking for an editor in chief. The Awl announced the job opening this morning in a post which, like many of the stories on the site, runs long (it clocks in at 796 words).
“As we enter our fifth year, we find ourselves part of an organization that has expanded from two guys typing in winter coats in a unheated room on St. Mark’s Place (RIP Cat the cat) to a flourishing collection of Internet publications which expand on our original mission while remaining true to our core convictions—and remaining entirely independently owned and self-supporting. We have an office, and it has both heat and air conditioning,” the job posting says.
Pixels to Print
Longreads-approved website The Awl—run by Radar, Observer, and Gawker expats Alex Balk and Choire Sicha—is coming up on its third anniversary! Since they’ve launched, they’ve spun off three blogs from the mothership, general ladies’-interest site The Hairpin, comedy blog Splitsider, and most recently, gadget blog The Wirecutter.
And as of today, they’ve now launched a…Tumblr…radio station…of music videos, AwlMusic.TV. DJ’d by them, and run by Eric Spiegelman, he of Old Jews Telling Jokes.
Maybe it’s just best to let them explain.
Occupy Wall Street
Last week we wrote about the art of turning faddish blogs into book deals that pay money. Over at The Awl, Jon Methven offers an illustrated explanation of the process, including visual diagrams of “Publishing Needs Based On Urban Outfitters Sales Racks” and “Identifying a Culturally Relevant Book Idea: Roadkill Yoga‘s Path Read More
Edward T. Hall III, better known as “Ted” to his friends, has become one of loudest voices on Occupy Wall Street. The lanky redhead with the neon-splotched hat looks vaguely like a Scream-era Matthew Lillard, making him easy to identify in YouTube videos of protests, where he can frequently be found preaching to the crowd in almost every single instance of arrests during the occupation of Zuccotti Park.
Before becoming a member of OWS, Mr. Hall made a minor splash in the tabloids, when he jumped a JFK luggage carousal in an attempt to get around airport security without I.D. and talk to a girl.
So why is The New York Times making him the poster boy for the protest?
Back to School
During his first company-wide meeting two weeks ago, Nick Denton declared that Gawker Media is a technology company, not an editorial one, according to a report published on The Awl. The recasting of the Gawker blog network left at least one current editor scratching his head, but it was clearly a smart strategic message for Mr. Denton to broadcast.
The resurgence of New York media over the past two years has been led by companies whose primary business does not involve words. E-commerce colossus Gilt Groupe and technology and data giants Bloomberg and Reuters lured top legacy media talent to their doors with pre-recession salaries and the sense of relief offered by a company for whom making payroll is not a routine emergency.
Tavi Gevinson’s online magazine for teens, Rookie, launched today. Although it publishes daily, Rookie will have monthly themes to create the cohesiveness of a magazine issue, according to managing editor Emily Condon. This month is “beginnings,” appropriately. Rookie may still publish print volumes–a Rookie yearbook, say–but there are no immediate plans, she added. Read More