Happy Birthday Nick Denton: The Founder of Gawker Media

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The blog post is the quick reach of the day. Establishing one such blog network company with a large reader base is absolutely amazing. Nick Denton, through his online platform Gawker Media, has created a buzzword and accumulated readers from all walks of life. Starting the blog company in his apartment in Soho, transforming it into a mammoth online media company, and eventually declaring bankruptcy, – his journey has been incredible.

Date of Birth: 24 August 1966

Net Worth: Between $10 million and $50 million (as of 2016)

Before joining the Financial Times as a journalist soon after college, Nick Denton started freelancing for British newspapers in the 1990s. Later in 2002, Gawker Media was founded with two sites Gawker.com and Gizmodo.com, a gadget centre. On the 56th birthday of Nick Denton, we bring a few interesting yet less known facts about the internet entrepreneur and the founder of Gawker Media.

  1. Nick attended the University College School (UCS) in Hampstead, London, for his education. He studied Philosophy, Politics, and Economics at University College, Oxford. There he was the editor of the university’s magazine. He began his career as a journalist at the Financial Times. In 1998 he quit the FT, determined to start his own internet venture.
  2. In October 1998, Nick Denton co-founded a social networking site, First Tuesday and Moreover Technologies (later acquired by LexisNexis), with some of his schoolmates from UCS.
  3. Gawker Media was founded in October 2003, with the tagline “Today’s gossip is tomorrow’s news.” The company was formerly known as Blogwire, Inc and Gawker Media, Inc.
  4. Gizmodo.com, Lifehacker, Jalopnik, io9 (science fiction), Deadspin (the sports blog), Kotaku (the gaming blog), Jezebel, and Fleshbot were the other 8 sites owned by Gawker Media. Together, they were generating more than 450 million page views every month during 2010. Gizmodo and Lifehacker have been the largest sites of Gawker Media.
  5. Nick Denton was featured in the Sunday Times’s Rich List 2007 with an estimated net worth of approx £140 million ($205 million), which was based on the sales of his previous companies and the then-current value of Gawker Media.
  6. On March 18, 2016, the Florida jury ordered Nick Denton to pay $115 million for publishing a sex tape on Gawker Media that showed a former professional wrestler Hulk Hogan (Terry Bollea) having sex with his friend’s wife. On March 21, Hulk Hogan was awarded a total of $25 million, including $10 million from Denton personally.
  7. Nick Denton Controversy with Peter Thiel: In 2007, Owen Thomas, a gay writer of Valleywag, the Valley gossip column later merged into Gawker.com, outed Peter Thiel in a blog post entitled Peter Thiel is totally gay, people. In response, Thiel called Valleywag the “Silicon Valley equivalent of Al Qaeda”. He expressed his rage further by calling the website “terrible for the Valley, which is supposed to be about people who are willing to think out loud and be different. I think they should be described as terrorists, not as writers or reporters.” Later in May 2016, it was revealed that Peter Thiel was secretly covering the costs of Hulk Hogan’s lawsuits against Nick’s Gawker Media.
  8. In May 2016, Nick Denton wrote an open letter to Peter Thiel, calling him a thin-skinned billionaire who, despite all the success and recognition one could hope for, gets furious over criticism and spends years in planning and plotting to sue his opponents in court.
  9. On August 1, 2016, Nick Denton filed for Chapter 11 personal bankruptcy protection to prevent wrestler Hulk Hogan from seizing his assets.

“Forget about someone’s resume or how they present themselves at a party. Can they blog or not? The blog doesn’t lie.”

The enthusiastic blogger’s above quote demonstrates his keen interest in writing and desire to be in the blogging business. Let us wish Nick Denton many happy blogging years in the future on his birthday.

The post is a part of a B’day Series where we celebrate the birthday of renowned personalities from the Tech Industry, very frequently. The series includes Entrepreneurs, C-level Executives, innovators, or renewed leaders who moved the industry with their exponential skill set and vision. The intent is to highlight the person’s achievements and touch base the little known, but interesting, part of his life. You can see the list of all earlier celebrated tech personalities, including Mark Zuckerberg, Marissa Mayor, Sean Parker, Andy Rubin, Julian AssangeSir Richard Branson, and Sergey Brin by following this link or subscribe to your daily newsletter.

To make it more exciting, we suggest you make use of the comment section if you are among the ones celebrating their birthday with today’s featured personality.

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