“Charticles” Are Out Of Bounds

Choire Sicha and two other Gawker editors walked out on Nick Denton late last year. They’d had enough, but enough of what? The New York Times had to find out.

…During a vacation at a house on Fire Island in November, Mr. Sicha decided he’d had enough. He said he resented Mr. Denton’s pressure to produce more mass-appeal content.
“I don’t care that top 10 lists perform well on the Internet,” Mr. Sicha said by phone last week from New Hampshire, where he was covering the primaries for The New York Observer. “I don’t want to write a top 10 list in my life, ever. I don’t want to construct a charticle.”
He said he had long understood from Mr. Denton that Gawker’s sought-after audience was supposed to be prominent members of the Manhattan news media like Tina Brown and Kurt Andersen.
Ms. Brown, speaking by telephone from her apartment before leaving for a cocktail party last week, said she had never been a regular reader.

Sicha, clearly a man of standards, is running an interesting bit of copy on his personal site.

Disclaimer: I’M UNEMPLOYED! I can go to yoga in the middle of the day or like have sex with whoever I want and maybe even pretty soon get SOME FOODSTAMPS. Man. Maybe someday I will put some clips of my writing up here so as to get jobs. Or maybe I’ll just lay here in my own filth! ROCK AND ROLL WILL NEVER DIE.

Yet, as we’ve seen above, Sicha is working. He was in New Hampshire last week, covering the Presidential primaries for The New York Observer. At any rate, we all have our lines in the sand. I can imagine a copywriter with a great reel saying something like, “I’m not touching that. It’s DM.”

About David Burn

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. In order to both celebrate and critique the industry, I started AdPulp in Chicago in 2004. In 2006, I launched and led an agency content department at BFG. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.