This is a moving post by Adam Schragin, on the degradation of Austin blog Austinist by its publisher, Jake Dobkin and Gothamist LLC.
I was once an editor with Phillyist, another Gothamist LLC property - until I wasn’t. Some of us created KeyPulp, until we couldn’t keep that going, either. It’s hard to do something awesome that takes a lot of time to get right when it’s not the source of your income. It’s even harder to convince others to do the same.
Gothamist and its network of sites are managed by someone who has only gotten where he is because others were willing to express love for their cities without pay. That’s something that deserves gratitude, not incompetent management.
You don’t manage a successful website about Austin from New York without leaning heavily on the experience and insight of your Austin team. You can’t. You don’t know the city, you don’t know the people, you don’t know the writers. All you have are numbers, and arbitrary goals, and apples-to-oranges comparisons. And ego. None of those things are useful when you’re trying to build something bigger than a website.
Something like, as Schragin puts it, a family.