So it’s an obvious publicity stunt by owner and showman Nick Denton, but, yes, that’s the shameful Jared Paul Stern posting on Gawker.com this weekend. And he’s using his new (and hopefully short-lived) forum to really stick it to his nemeses L.A. billionaire Ron Burkle and the New York Daily News. This is truly madness. Now, normally, the real Gawker posters — Jesse Oxfeld and Jessica Coen — take the weekend off, so ostensibly Stern is filling in for them. Needless to say, his postings are generating a lot of “you’re-a-real-jerk-Jared” comments. What’s up for next weekend, Nick, hiring Jayson Blair to post nastily about The New York Times?
UPDATE: I’m told that Jared Paul Stern initially pledged that he wouldn’t just post about Burkle, yet that’s what he’s done all weekend. (He’ll probably love that spanking he’s got coming … ugh.) He claims the Los Angeles Times has assigned a full-time investigative reporter “to uncover [Burkle’s] dirty deeds.” I’m also told he’s been deleting and editing comments he doesn’t like, which has infuriated the website’s already angry readers. I hear the traffic is no better than on a typical weekend when no one posts, so that means Stern on Gawker = dead Gawker. Finally, just in case you were wondering, Gawker’s editing duo of Coen and Oxfeld were furious when they heard Stern was going to post in their place. Can’t you see them clinking Cosmo’s or Dewar’s now that he’s shown himself to be a disaster at it?
2nd Update: Responding to an angry reader who wrote a strongly worded email saying he’d now stop clicking on Gawker.com because Denton was making Stern into a hero, Denton answered back cheekily: “You think we’re making him a hero: I think he’s making a fool of himself. And we’d be equally happy to give Burkle a platform.”