A Layman’s View of the Death of Gawker
Today, I read through the closing comments and posts, a knot in my throat, knowing that something great had come to a distinct and undignified end at the hands of a soft skinned billionaire.
Gawker, was always a bastard in the eyes of the world. Yes, I said it. A bastard, but a true one.
It’s hard to look at it as just something that happened to one publication, and not concede that this could be, or already is, a dangerous precedent. Hulk Hogan’s victory in Court, will forever be shadowed by the fact that it wasn’t even him, it was Peter Thiel.
Think on that a moment. Just think about it. Someone got mad at a news story, then proceeded to use his money, a lot of money, to shutter a free press organization. This was no victory for privacy, or however else Thiel would like to spin it.
Sure, Gawker published some unsavory, often banal or weird content, but outing someone that literally no one had even heard of outside of the circles Thiel floated in, and then get crushed in to oblivion because one guy couldn’t handle an unflattering story about him, is insanity. That a mistrial wasn’t declared when it was discovered that Thiel was bankrolling Hogan, is also insanity.
Just think on it. You might not have liked how Gawker operated, but our Free Press in the US suffered an incredible blow today, as the organizations shutters come down for the last time. Other publishers might not realize it yet, but you should be afraid, very afraid of what people with to much money, and not enough personal development can do to you simply for writing words on paper. (Well, words on computer screens, but you get the idea).
RIP Gawker. Goodnight.