Gawker and Weblogs show us where media is headed

The success of Gawker and Weblogs Inc tells us less about the future of blogs than of mainstream media.

Gawker and Weblogs Inc. are cashing in on the fever surrounding blogs. Weblogs sells to AOL, Gawker signs a distribution deal in Europe. But their success doesn't mean much for millions of other bloggers. Instead, it shows us that the blog world is a promising place for media entrepreneurs.

Gawker's Gizmodo and Weblogs' Engadget are new media magazines. They have wide readership, lightning fast editorial processes, and a format that invites interactivity. What's more, they operate in a lively and fast-growing sphere that pulsates with buzz and propagates links by the millions. As a publisher, what's not to like about that?

This is a new form of mainstream media. This isn't to say that millions of other blogs won't develop their own economic success. But that will likely be grounded in micropublishing and ultra-targeted advertising. It's a different story altogether.

I look at Gizmodo and Engadget as a sign of what's coming in mainstream journalism. As these two worlds converge, more and more journalists will be sitting at the breakfast table blogging, just as I am now. Some will have bosses, others will be on their own. Most of them, I'm betting, will have to buy their own health insurance.

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