If you are reading this, it means Gawker is back. We reached out to some of our favorite writers, artists, policymakers, and billionaires to ask them how that makes them feel. Below are their answers.
Tina Brown, founder, The Daily Beast: Will Gawker reinvent itself as a sparkling new platform for emerging talent or plunge back into yesteryear's sinkhole of snark? I will stay tuned with interest.
Bowen Yang, comedian/Saturday Night Live cast member: If blind items come back I want people to know that they’re all about me.
Lena Dunham, writer/director/actress: A few years ago I would have said this was literally my worst nightmare and gotten under my covers for a week. But honestly the Gawker brand of savagery seems almost quaint in our current Internet landscape and pandemic life could use the shakeup.
Glenn Greenwald, journalist: I was a fan of Gawker for most of its existence, with lots of exceptions. I am most decisively not a fan of how most of its luminaries have desperately clung to that old identity and clique like high school athletes who peaked at the age of 17 and keep talking on Facebook when they're hitting 40 about the cool pool party they were drunk at in 1995. If Gawker provides an updated version of what it was at its best — a defiant, experimental, rule-flouting counterweight to the homogenized corporate media — I'll be happy and celebrate its return. But if it embodies the current attributes of its faded, aging, bitter stars of the past — sanctimonious liberal group-think, dreary woke-scolding, Democratic Party loyalty, and try-hard unfunny performative rebelliousness — I’ll ignore it except to occasionally mock it and heap scorn on it. I'm rooting for you!
Xeni Jardin, journalist/commentator: Wowwwwwwww wow wow wow Gawker? Back? Nature is healing.
Phillie Phanatic, mascot, Philadelphia Phillies:
Miranda July, filmmaker/artist: Some people who could write for the new Gawker: Sarah Miller and Safy Hallan Farah. Annie Hamilton could have a "On The Town With Annie" column. Aaron Z. Lewis could write about media and technology. I'm not saying any of these people want to write for the new Gawker but if they did I would read it and then I wouldn't have to go to each of their individual Substacks which would save me some time.
Leon Cooperman, Chairman and CEO, Omega Advisors: What? Spit it out. I’m very busy. You caught me right after closing the market. I’m not familiar with any of the bullshit. I don’t know anything about Gawker, so talk to somebody else.
Cat Marnell, author: Gawker was a fantastic website and I'm so happy it's coming back. I remember earlllly days when you had to use a media email address to get commenting privileges; I was an intern at GLAMOUR magazine and used my Conde Nast email and got one, and I was so thrilled. Years later they were writing about me. Even though it was easy to talk smack about the writers and editors at Gawker — who invited criticism on themselves by putting it out there — I always wanted to impress them! Can't wait to see what's really good and you bitches better invite me and my boyfriend to the party.
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN): What is Gawker??
John Catsimatidis, former New York mayoral candidate and founder of Gristedes Foods: Okay so look, I’m a little busy this afternoon. Gawker’s back? Nah, I didn’t hear that. I think everybody should have the right to speak. That’s the truth. Everybody should have a voice.
Keith McNally, restaurateur: Keith McNally is unfamiliar with Gawker and will thus be passing.
David Remnick, editor, The New Yorker: Older people are not supposed to like the latest thing in any area — in music, in writing. Younger people pushing the boundaries, trying new things, succeeding, failing — that's the idea. And so while I didn't love everything the old Gawker did — and they could be brutal about people once in a while in a way that could be awful — there was also an energy to the enterprise and an eye for young writers when it was at its best that I had to admire. Jia Tolentino is just one of the great talents who came from that time [Ed note: We’re aware]. Also, I hated the idea of a Silicon Valley baron putting an end to a publication. So, here's Gawker again, I hope for the best and wish them well.
Spencer Pratt, reality television star: Gawker once referred to me as someone ‘they never wanted to hear from again.’ I’m glad that a stint in obscurity has made them reconsider. Best wishes on your little gossip blog!
Sarah Schulman, writer/activist: Considering you were taken down by a right-wing narcissist, glad to see the return. But… fear that in a heightened environment of accusations and escalations, hope you expose people who really abuse actual power.
Noam Chomsky, philosopher/social critic: Don't know enough about it even to venture an opinion.
Paris Hilton’s publicist, on behalf of Paris Hilton: No thank you!