Last week, Gawker reported that, in the summer of 2013, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the events, Fox News executives had retaliated against star anchor Shepard Smith because he had voiced his desire to come out as gay. Fox News called the report “100% false and a complete fabrication,” and pointed out—directly and through cooperative reporters—what it thought were discrepancies in our account.
Astra Taylor began her career making documentaries about thinkers (Zizek! and Examined Life). Now she's doing the thinking herself. In her new book, The People's Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age, Taylor argues the Internet isn't as liberating a force as its initial boosters promised. She's joining us at 2 p.m. ET here in Kinja to take questions and talk about her book.
Wow, you guys missed some... OK stuff. These are the 10 least-read Gawker posts of the year, ranked by pageviews. Give them another chance! And what do you have against Nelson Mandela, international news, terrible music, and former Gawker editorial fellow Maggie Lange? (The Lanny Davis thing, we get.)
Our best work here at Gawker is not always our most popular. Sometimes those two indicia—popularity and quality—are negatively correlated, and sometimes they're aligned. It's a crapshoot. Below, you will find the a list of the best stuff we came up with over the past 12 months. It's a grab-bag of searing criticism, straight dirt, personal assaults, intense narrative journalism, dark essays, a dead dog, jokes we couldn't get out of our heads until we put them on the site, gag headlines, and screaming goats. We hate to disappoint the loyal readers who expect, as one wag recently put it, "the short newsy posts typical of Gawker." But this is the stuff the staff was really into.
A debate is raging here at Gawker Media: Should we, as a suite of web sites, maintain (with one exception) our current adherence to the grand American newspapering tradition of Headlines that Capitalize the First Letter of Each Significant Word? Or should we crumble before the creeping Europeanization of our culture and adopt the global norm of headlines that, casually, Capitalize only the first letter? What say you?
Where's Edward Snowden? As I write this, only a handful of people know exactly the location of the world famous NSA whistleblower, after he apparently ditched his flight from Moscow to Cuba last night. One of those people is Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. Snowden is "safe and healthy" and his "spirits are high," Assange told reporters begging for any scrap of information on a conference call this morning. It is this secret knowledge that has paradoxically thrust Assange's anti-secrecy outlet back into the media spotlight after a long period of decline. Now there's hints of another massive leak. Wikileaks is back, God help us all.