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posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 18, 2002

A project I’ve been working on for the past couple of months went live today. Gawker is a weblog focused on NYC media gossip, a snarkier, fluffier version of Romenesko’s Media News. I designed the logo, did a bit of MT heavy lifting, and contributed most of the layout.

The best Gawkerism so far is “real estate porn”: that’s when folks get all excited in their bathing suit areas about cool architecture and such; think the SoHo Prada store designed by Koolhaas.

Your feedback is appreciated.

Reader comments

EdieDec 18, 2002 at 12:50PM

Loved it…don’t live in New York but visit vicariously on occasion.

MarqDec 18, 2002 at 12:58PM

The logo is great. The design is clean. I’ve already spent a good half hour digging through the site itself, so it’s probably safe to say I’ll be back there.

AnnaDec 18, 2002 at 1:06PM

Oh, my. This is incredible. I could spend hours here. As pathetic a New Yorker as I am, I’m more likely to devote hours to digging through this site than I am to actually getting out and doing something. Excellent. Now I can feel like I’m up on everything without moving from my computer.

By the way, I saw a sticker for cityvice.com on the side of a pay phone at my subway station the other day, next to a marker drawing of two rabbits gettin’ busy. Nice.

haroldDec 18, 2002 at 1:08PM

nice site. of course, “real estate porn” isn’t a neologism. thankfully, “gawkerism” is. well done…

Steve HallDec 18, 2002 at 1:56PM

A truly excellent edition to the blogosphere. You and Nick and Elizabeth have down a great job on this and the potential to actually make money is one I have always belived in. I can’t see whay it won’t work with Gawker. Great name, great design, great content.

Although, I wish Rick Bruner, since I know him, would have invited me in to evaluate it earlier:-)

Great job.

ElectrinDec 18, 2002 at 2:55PM

I think you’ve captured the youthful exuberence and the spark in the city’s soul. I love the logo, it’s multifaceted typography’s reflective of the diversity within New York.

SimonDec 18, 2002 at 4:31PM

I thought the logo was Rothko-esque. And so to link with the theme and a New York artist Guardian Rothko article.

ekDec 18, 2002 at 7:25PM

Argh, can’t seem to get to the site — keeps timing out on me. Server overload?

RayDec 18, 2002 at 8:11PM

Excellent work. There’s something for everyone and I’m Looking forward to reading the site daily.

AlDec 18, 2002 at 8:21PM

Very nice, I don’t get downstate as much as I’d like… but this will be my first bit of research before hitting the thruway… everything I need to know and a whole lot less.

Young LukeDec 18, 2002 at 9:23PM

It’s like the Morning News with a business plan.

When does the Chicago version arrive?

vanderwalDec 18, 2002 at 9:34PM

The design and content are a wonderful addition to the Web and my daily reads. Thanks.

greg.orgDec 18, 2002 at 11:57PM

I thought real estate porn was laying bare the details of other people’s real estate transactions, like the NY Observer does in it’s Manhattan Transfers column.

Here’s a juicy one, a three way with adjoining townhouses from Edgar Bronfman, the freaky Wildensteins, and Mariah Carey’s ex, Tony Mottola for sale for a total asking price of $109 million.


Like porn porn, real estate porn’s all about getting a rise out of watching someone else do it…

greg.orgDec 18, 2002 at 11:58PM

oh, brilliant site, by the way. in the American sense of the word.

brettDec 19, 2002 at 10:34AM

I liked it..
a bit too many links around but nice to the eye.

Bruce ColeDec 19, 2002 at 12:39PM

Damn, thats nice!

nickDec 20, 2002 at 1:21AM

Gah. Hate to piss on your parade, but it reads like ‘The Sunday Format’ done as weblog. But I am sure that there are indeed people in NYC who sashay downtown singing ‘gucci gucci prada yaya’ to the tune of ‘Kinky Afro’ by the Happy Mondays, thus thinking that they’re both terribly hip and terribly ironic (but not quite ever at the same time) in some great self-affirming oscillation, a dynamo powered on a speed-reading of Veblen.

Looks pretty, though.

greg.orgDec 20, 2002 at 10:57AM

If there weren’t people sashaying around singing, there are now.

I can’t get ‘gucci gucci prada yaya’ out of my head.

Thanks a lot, nick.

staceyDec 20, 2002 at 11:47AM

Perhaps because I’m on a Mac (OS 9, IE 5) but as I rollover your links they disappear, not to return.

fieldingDec 20, 2002 at 5:06PM

honestly, though i hate to be contrarian in this group hug, i really fail to see the value in this site. it’s a huge mess of text, poorly arranged to the eye (at least my eye, on my browser). and when i try to plunder its depths (or, given the content, i should probably avoid using words like “depths” and stick to “lengths”) i just keep getting an empty feeling. it’s funny and ironic that the advertising banner at the top is for corcoran realty, perhaps the most evil organization operating within new york, and the bane of most prospective tenants’ existence.

there is a lot of unsubstantiated opinion in these posts. if something is just “ugly”, why? the only way it seems to resemble nyc is that it reads like a lot of people shouting loudly over each other, without really considering or organizing their arguments.

maybe it’s just in its infancy. don’t know. maybe it’s for other bloggers (and local shut-ins?) who have no idea what nyc is really like, and have an easier time believing that these loud, pushy posts are very reflective of the dynamism and valuable internal criticism of our city. but whatever it is, i guess i hope this isn’t it - for long, at least.

i hope that didn’t come across as excessively mean. it was just, like all the posts on gawker, my opinion.

richardDec 20, 2002 at 5:41PM

Overall, I’d have to say, “eh” and shrug my shoulders. It looks like it could be somewhat entertaining, and at least there are some photos to break up all that text, but there’s just so much text there that I can’t bear to try and read it all.

If you can increase the leading, it would help both columns. The right column, especially, is simply smashed together visually.

It would also be nice to see a Kottke site (outside of 0sil8) that deviates from the big left column/thin right column format. Show us whatcha got.

annaDec 20, 2002 at 7:22PM


Why should this old Australian “news” matter for New Yorkers? Ouch.

Gawkers also means “outsider” so the name is excellent.

Who are the Royal “WE”? LizNYC and Kottke?

DamienDec 25, 2002 at 8:00PM

I hate to be
So terribly rude
But that logo
Has got to gogo

DeanDec 30, 2002 at 10:16AM

A bit too busy and seems to scroll forever, loaded quickly on IE though. Not a big fan of all-white backgrounds with no or little color relief (sorry) too much glare for comfortable reading.

JasonJan 03, 2003 at 1:06PM

Right, I like the idea and it’s got buzz, style, and smarm to burn. Even further, the logo is interesting and it appears that you worked hard on it. These things being said, the site is cluttered, texty, disorganized to the untrained eye, and nowhere near as visually exciting as it should be for its theme. And while reminding us every 5 seconds of the three people that help make it work lends the site personality and credibility, you run the risk of making the tension, drama, and ‘stickiness’ of the site all yourselves and your friends. This thing would work much better as a MediaNews for the Hip than a reality-based Sex in the City.

This thread is closed to new comments. Thanks to everyone who responded.