Gawker.com has announced that it will be shuttering next week. Jezebel, Deadspin, Gizmodo, and the other sites of Gawker Media, which was purchased for $135 million earlier this week, will continue on under the ownership of Univision. The flagship website will shut down after 14 years of operation.
For many of you, this is a blessing. Some of us, however, have mixed feelings on the matter. Gawker was shady, often unethical, and bullying, and its excesses ultimately cost the site its livelihood, but it was also one of the last major independent sites, one of the few places brave enough to speak truth to power, even if their version of the truth was sometimes sleazy, overly cynical, or downright mean.
I don’t know that Gawker will be missed by too many people, but I do know that there are a lot of powerful people in the world right now who are feeling a sense of relief, and I gain no satisfaction in their comfort, nor do I find justice in its destruction over a billionaire’s personal vendetta.