The summer's not the only thing that's practically finished. Presenting Gawker's weeklong series Already Over, where we focus only on the interesting side of the classic "What's In/What's Out" list. Because anything "in" is already "out" or on its way, so let's just eliminate the middleman, shall we? With each installment, you'll be treated to an unsparing profile of whatever needs to be dragged into the weeds and put down for good. And just to kick things off in style, let's look no further than Gawker.
Remember the beginning of 2003, back before everyone in your bowling league had a blog? If you were internet savvy or otherwise connected, you were hearing buzz about a gal named Liz Spiers and a website called Gawker.com, which took a jaundiced look at New York media and society. It was written with the kind of acid-tongued contempt not seen since early-period Spy, and Spiers became synonymous with snark. A year later she was snapped up by New York magazine, only to be replaced by Choire Sicha, whose distaste for the gross inequalities of life in the city broadened the site's focus while maintaining its original goal of chronicling the absurdities of the city's major industries in ways that other organizations were too afraid to do. Gawker was New York media's must-read, constantly clicked on to see what we were going to say next.
Well, that was all a long time ago.
When's the last time Gawker was relevant or interesting? Sure, we ticked off George Clooney, that's got to be worth something. But let's be honest: The site is as stale as, well, late-period Spy. The formula is so obvious now that every child over the age of seven is acquainted with it: Read article in New York Times, create unfunny Photoshop related to article, use opaque title to describe it, post. (Okay, that's Balk's formula; Coen doesn't use as much Photoshop and her sources are more likely to be Us Weekly or People. We have no idea what the hell Mohney does, but if you see a YouTube clip from 1989, it's a pretty safe bet that he dug it up.) At this point, do you really want to hear another joke about the size of Nick Denton's head* or read another labored construction involving "our [unfunny adjectival description] sibling [name of other Gawker Media site]?" Frankly, everything you see here is going to be up at Jossip five minutes later, but without the annoying gigantic typeface that our genius designers have decided to install in a bizarre plan to drive traffic away. The novelty of learning that Mike Myers dragged his hockey stick into some LES dive again has surely worn off by now. Even the New York Press is running a column modeled on our snark + sense of superiority + air of insiderness motif. The Press! (We finally found a copy that wasn't covered in tramp piss, and it's pretty much what you'd expect.) How much more played out can you get?
Gawker is finished, done, a clich . We're even running features about motherhood in Brooklyn now, for Christ's sake! Andrew Krucoff must be rolling over in his grave. (Also tired: Krucoff jokes.) Whatever fondness you may have for this site exists purely as a function of nostalgia; we haven't been any good since July at the latest. In fact, if you're actually still reading this post, it's a sign that you're either so bored or lacking in discrimination that you'll read anything. Because, let's face it: Gawker? Already over.
*Really, though, it's enormous. You can see it from space.