Gawker Found February To Be “Not Dreadful”

    March 3, 2009

Gawker Media’s Nick Denton has been in bunker mode for some time now, selling sites and laying off individuals in preparation for an economic apocalypse.  Given Gawker’s success, this spooked a lot of people.  However, a new memo from Denton hints that maybe things aren’t so bad, after all.

Nick Denton
 Nick Denton

As reported by Jim Romenesko, Denton admitted to his employees yesterday, "February 2009 wasn’t nearly as dreadful as it could have been.  A lot of sites struck traffic records — including io9, Gawker, Deadspin, Jalopnik and Jezebel.  In total, we drew 297m pageviews — some 34% over last February’s level and 50% up if you account for the sites we spun off in the meantime."

Gawker Media apparently saw an improvement in its bottom line, too, since Denton continued, "I’m not even going to tell you how much our ad revenues were up in February.  Because that rate of growth is in part a statistical fluke.  For the year to March, it looks like we could be as much as a fifth up over last winter."

And all of this becomes even more significant once you take into account the fact that February is usually a slow month.

Denton didn’t go so far as to sound the all-clear, of course; doing so while the Dow’s at a 12-year low would be irresponsible.  But we may have reached a point at which even one of our industry’s biggest pessimists is starting to feel secure.

Hat tip goes to Tameka Kee.