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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Gawker to Allow Its Readers to Create Their Own Gawker Blogs

Posted by Paul Constant on Wed, Feb 13, 2013 at 9:44 AM

This is either genius or a disaster in the making. Gawker is becoming a full-on blogging platform, starting with their car blog, Jalopnik:

You'll also notice your Kinja blog has the ability to compose. This is so you can use your page like an actual blog, creating original content to be shared, commented on, and viewed by others in the community.

Have you always wanted a blog in our network? You can do that, too...Your blog will look similar to our flagship sites and will have all the same tools, including image annotation...If you want, you'll also be able to republish articles from our site (and eventually all Gawker sites) and we'll be able to do the same. If we do republish something you created you'll get the byline, the credit, and it'll be clear where it came from.

In a lot of ways, this is supposed to be what the internet is about, right? Everyone creating content on a platform that treats everyone equally, and so on. But what happens if Gawker republishes too many posts by one of their amateur bloggers (note that there's nothing about compensation for Gawker bloggers in this post) and people start feeling used? What if one of the reader blogs outpaces the regular writers? Will the paid Gawker writers have to compete with thousands of other Gawker bloggers who are out for their jobs? Will the signal-to-noise ratio get completely fucked? Or will this all just blow over once it becomes obvious that most Gawker readers don't want to be bloggers?

I'd have had more faith in this idea if it came before last year. Gawker's nearly year-old revised commenting system, is still a terrible, disjointed clusterfuck. If this revised blogging platform makes the sites even more difficult to follow, I can't imagine this being a good idea for the Gawker empire.

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