Nick Denton Runs a “Slave Shop,” Oxford Chum Jason Pontin Declares

By on 01/15/2008 9:43 PM @beet_tv

Gawker Media chief Nick Denton is "profoundly talented….kind of bitchy"….and gets by with things he shouldn’t.  But he does it in a sufficiently Oxonian way so "you don’t feel too dirty," says Jason Pontin, editor and chief of Technology Review and New York Times business columnist.

Pontin is a former writer for Denton at the Isis magazine at Oxford, where the two studied in the 80′s.

Pontin is appalled by the compensation terms under which Denton’s writers toil, calling the operation a "slave shop."

Nonetheless, he is a big fan of his former college editor and his product.  But he notes that the quality of Gawker properties has a direct relation to the personal attention of Denton. 

These days, Denton is taking a direct role in  Gawker, which has had  some set backs lately, Porfolio.com’s Jeff Bercovici wrote today.  Recently, Dan Fost wrote how difficult it is for star editors to maintain quality across expanding media properties.

You can find the video of this interview here

– Andy Plesser
 

Update:  1/17:  Just posted a second part of my interview with Pontin, this one about his thoughts on Owen Thomas of Valleywag, another Gawker property.

Update: 1/21:  Just added this Q&A with Nick from Wired

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