Tuesday May 9, 2006

What's up with the Daily Pulp?


Our story so far: Bob Norman launched the original Daily Pulp back in January, with a pretty decent splash. Word spread, and by March, the New Times brass took interest, and made him move it to their own domain. So far, so good. Then, on May 3, after months of posting every single weekday, the blog goes dark. Rick, along with most of the journalists in SoFla (who read the blog with some combination of delight and dread) are like, “wtf??” Then, on May 9th (yesterday, to those of you who are following along), a post appears on the Pulp from Tony Ortega, New Times editor, which cryptically begins “Bob’s busy with an investigation, so I thought I’d fill in . . .”

So, yeah, wtf? Well, rumour has it that it’s all about a beef between Bob and the New Times brass. A post (presumably the one intended for May 3) was vetoed by NT Lawyers, resulting in what must have been one of those legendary newsroom arguments. Lawyers and editors tend to win those fights, though, and the post never saw the light of day. So Bob goes off and writes another post, describing the whole incident (and probably using some choice words), and now they won’t let him put that post up, either. Now thoroughly pissed off, Bob stops writing the Pulp. He’s either sick of the whole damned thing, or it’s some sort of a stand-off.

If true, it’s disappointing but not unforeseeable. The New Times plays all punk-rock, but it’s a big national corporation, so it needs its ass covered. Maybe it’s impossible to do a blog like the Pulp under that kind of environment? In any case, if anyone has any other info on the situation, let’s hear it.

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  1. Rick    Tue May 9, 09:43 PM #  

    I wondered what was going on over there. Shame. But you had to wonder how long it would be before he was called to the bosse’s office and given the same speech dozens of other edgy journalists have probably heard over the years.

  2. NicFitKid    Wed May 10, 12:35 AM #  

    Bob should break free of the borg—er, New Times. Seriously, the content he produced for The Daily Pulp beats the hell out of 90% of the stories, features, columns, nanoprobes (belay my last) produced by New Times (Miami AND Broward/Palm Beach cubes—er, versions) for the past year.

  3. alesh    Wed May 10, 07:49 AM #  

    Well, sure. The problem is monetization: writing for the New Times produces a living salary, whereas writing a blog produces spare change (at best). This ought to be different, and may be, one day, but not anytime soon. See Franklin’s great discussion of the issue. Theoretically, if I have 10,000 readers (a very rough estimate, but one which I think of as conservative) and each of them kicked in $1 per month, well, I’d be living much fucking larger then I am now, let me tell you.

    Google ads really work for best for technology blogs, where the subject matter is close to a product (at I type, my ads are selling “South Beach Hotels” . . . why in tarnation would tourists be reading CM?!).

    I actually see two avenues worth exploring: (1) something like IndieKarma (though that system has kinks to be ironed out), and (2) something like Federated Media or The Deck. The latter would be a network of some of the more read Miami blogs, which could sell ads to local businesses and restaurants without each blogger having to do it individually.

    I just don’t think the time is quite right yet to get into all of that.

  4. Steve    Wed May 10, 09:19 AM #  

    Great post, great scoop. Gotta keep in mind that tossing “edgy” or “countercultural” into the mixmaster with “mainstream” is a recipe for explosion, leaving egg on face. Let’s see what gives.

    Something bothers me, though: You guys aren’t making any money off your blogs? I thought everybody was cashing in—I know I did, and in 6 months at this rate I should be doing it full-time, comfortably living off it.