Long-form trend alert: Lots of former print media people are launching websites. There was another one today! It's time for us to rate five of these—and their chances of survival—honestly. This is important:
RapRadar: Elliot Wilson, former editor of hip hop magazine XXL, is launching what he hopes will become the Huffington Post of Hip Hop. Which is just a horrible slogan. Basically it'll be some HuffPo-ish mix of blogging, journalism, and hip hop celebrities writing guest columns. "If Jay-Z wants to express his feelings about Obama, there's not really a forum where he can do that right now," Wilson says. This is false.
Chance of Survival: Not great, but theoretically possible. XXL was a quality magazine. If he can replicate that online, he could build an audience. Problem: XXL already replicated itself online. Problem 2: Audience doesn't mean advertisers. See Vibe magazine, currently.
The Wrap: Ex-NYT correspondent and Gawker opponent Sharon Waxman launched this Hollywood/ entertainment news site thing last month. Bad timing, but hey.
Chance of Survival: Ehhh.... moderate? It'll have to get better. Waxman has some money at her back, which is good. But she has some very entrenched competition in Hollywood. If something happens to Nikki Finke, then... slightly less of a chance of failure.
BastardLife: This is Genre magazine editor Neal Boulton's "pansexual sex & relationships site for ALL men." No idea what that means. Is 'pansexual' different than 'bisexual?' It's a question you may be able to find the answer to at Bastardlife.com
Chance of Survival: As a forum for Neal Boulton's personal musings, decent. As a moneymaking venture, very low. Unless pansexuality takes off as a recession thing.
Alpha Kitty: Atoosa Rubenstein was a big shot editor at Seventeen magazine. Then she left to run this "Alpha Kitty" project. Which, as best we can tell, now consists of her Myspace page and a Youtube channel.
Chance of survival: Ummm.. good? But the chance of making money with this is nil, as far as we can tell. Although to be completely honest I'm still not sure what this thing really is.
Chance of Survival: Unless Tina comes up with a brilliant plan to monetize this site, it will be a victim of its launch timing and its utter lack of urgency to come up with a workable business plan. She will burn through Barry Diller's millions, subsidizing many worthy writers in the process, then eventually fold. It will be a nice place to go back to and read the archives one day, though.
[Disclosure: Neal Boulton has owed me freelance money forever, so I may be biased.]