In a rare move, Gawker has pulled its controversial post on Condé Nast CFO David Geithner, brother of former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner:
Gawker founder Nick Denton explained the move in a blog post on the site:
In light of Gawker’s past rhetoric about our fearlessness and independence, this can be seen as a capitulation. And perhaps, to some extent, it is. But it is motivated by a sincere effort build a strong independent media company, and to evolve with the audience we serve.
But although the Geithner story was taken down by Gawker’s management committee, Gawker’s editorial team, including editor-in-chief Max Read, “strenuously protested removing the post.” In other words, they think Denton capitulated:
Yesterday, Gawker published a post about the CFO of Condé Nast attempting to pay a gay porn star for a night in a Chicago hotel. Today the managing partnership of Gawker Media voted, 5-1, to remove it. Executive editor Tommy Craggs, who helped edit the piece, was the sole dissenter.
The vote to remove the post, which was written by staff writer Jordan Sargent and edited by several other Gawker staffers, comes after widespread criticism from our own readers and other outlets. Along the Craggs, every other member of Gawker Media’s editorial leadership, including Gawker’s editor-in-chief Max Read and the executive editors of Gawker Media’s Politburo, strenuously protested removing the post.
Besides CEO Nick Denton, the partners who voted to remove the post were Heather Dietrick, who serves as President and chief legal counsel; Andrew Gorenstein, who serves as the president of advertising and partnerships; chief operating officer Scott Kidder; chief strategy officer Erin Pettigrew; and chief executive officer Nick Denton, who founded Gawker Media in 2002. Along with Tommy Craggs, they belong to Gawker Media’s managing partnership, which Denton established in 2014 and whose members decide on all major company matters.
Sorry, guys, but that’s not how this works. The damage has been done, so now prepare for what comes next:
Heh. Well, now that Gawker is a union shop, maybe they can transfer over to the welder’s union?
Read had defended the story yesterday on Twitter:
After the announcement that Gawker pulled the piece, he tweeted this:
We will see what happens next as there’s obviously some tension in Gawker’s offices right now.
Editor’s note: This post has been updated.