Wagging The Valley’s Long Tail

San Jose Mercury News takes a closer look at Nick Denton’s Valleywag, a.k.a. Nick Douglas.

The 22-year-old college dropout has ruffled Silicon Valley’s feathers in the seven months since valleywag.com launched. The site has established itself with a daily quota of 12 items, a mixture of gossip, rumor and wry riffs. Plus, Valleywag gives the technology world something it secretly hungers for — Hollywood-style glamour.
“When a blow-up happens and it’s strictly tech, it really is boring,” said Douglas, who was plucked from his Pennsylvania Christian college a semester before graduating by Nick Denton, the founder of Gawker Media, to start Valleywag. Denton had followed Douglas’ postings on a site about blogging called Blogebrity. “The best thing for the tech industry is if it goes Hollywood.”
That would be best for Valleywag, too.

Frankly, I’m surprised there isn’t an equivalent ad blog that gossips ruthlessly about ad people. You know ad people would eat that shit up. I’m not inclined to offer such fare here, but I trust someone, someday, somewhere will.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. Funny…I’ve had an inkling to do just that for quite some time. Not necessarily as part of Adrants because if it were done right and properly ripped into the industry – which controls, oh 100 percent of all advertising budgets – I doubt there’s be anyone who’d want to advertise on Adrants any longer. Not that we don’t take our swipes but it’s most over the work rather than the people. Yes, I’ve sold out. But Adrants advertisers pay my mortgage and help me save money to pay for college tuition which, someday, will assuredly rear its ugly head.
    It wouldn’t be easy to do. It’s not as hard to snark on celebrities (Gawker), Hollywood (Defamer) and tech (Valleywag) as it would be to snark on ad industry types because people in those industries are famous and there’s all sort of dirt on them publicly available. Aside from Alex Bogusky, Lee Clow and Donny Deutsch, it’s not easy to find dirt on ad industry people. We’re tight lipped, scared for our jobs bunch.
    However…hmm…excuse me while I go launch another blog:-)

  2. You know what one great journalist said..
    “Fortune swims not in the mainstream of letters, but in the shallows where the suckers moon.”
    Best of luck on the new venture.

  3. We’re too dispersed.
    It’s one thing to plant someone in Santa Cruz, or West Hollywood, or NYC, or Washington D.C. to dish the dirt on the local scene– and of course, its players– but it’s quite another to cover the shores from The Big Apple to South Beach to Portland to L.A. (to make no mention of frozen Minnesota or hot-as-hell Texas).
    Someone would have to go to the Christmas and awards show parties. We sure as shit won’t set up web cams.
    The ad industry makes the tech wags look provincial in comparison– at least in terms of geography.