Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Gawker Refugees Get a Second Act: Defamer Crew Relaunches Movieline

movielinecomSome people finish working for Nick Denton’s Gawker Media empire and do their best to never go back to blogging again.

Not the veterans of Denton’s Defamer, the showbiz site he rolled into his Gawker flagship in February. The three men–Seth Abramovitch, Kyle Buchanan and S.T. VanAirsdale–are essentially reconstituting their old site, using the name and Web address of an even older site,

For more on the history of the original Movieline magazine, which started in 1989 and survived for a couple of years following the end of Bubble 1.0, see Abramovitch’s welcome post.

For more on the impetus to start up an entertainment blog in a market that’s struggling to  support the existing ones, we’ll have to talk to Jay Penske. Penske, the son of auto magnate Roger Penske, is relaunching Movieline as part of, the white-label email provider that raised $35 million last year and has plans to get into the content business.

No, I don’t get it, either. So until we get a chance to sit down with Penske, let’s conclude with a quote from Abramovitch, who is as optimistic as one should be when launching a blog: “I  just think it’s a viable thing,” he says. “If you have smart writing about pop culture, people will come to you.”

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald