Interesting: Gawker has finally made the move to bylines, after a long (for the Internets) and storied evolution from single-blogger model kicked off by Elizabeth Spiers (once a nobody, just like YOU!) to the post-pumping factory it is now (seriously, have you ever popped into their office on a workday? It looks something like this). Today, they have finally started to sign posts, which makes sense, considering that along with many voices on the masthead comes many backstories and interrelationships. The most obvious has to do with new managing editor Choire Sicha (whoops, we almost wrote "Manging Editor" but that would be new "After Hours" correspondent Joshua David Stein) — anyhow, Sicha, as most of you know, returned to Gawker after a year and a half at the New York Observer, so any unsigned posts by him — however clearly identifiable to those who recognize his Signature! Writing! Style! — created the potential for conflict, or at least the appearance of one (though we're pretty sure this is by Balk, btw) (for whom there is no fear of conflict because he hates everyone equally).
Anyhow, as they point out via their very-first "Accountability vs. Solidarity" tag, it's a matter of making Gawker accountable and transparent and like the serious journalists that they are. Actually they'd plotz to read that but it's true; they do good work and they know wherefrom they speak, even if the delivery is a little tart for some tastes (I distinguish between fact and opinion here, obvi). But with the kind of amazing platform Gawker has comes, yes, responsibility — Accoutability! Transparency! Responsibility! — and so authorship is another way of standing behind posts, and in so doing, being extra-careful about what goes into them. It's also, frankly, high time we were able to stop guessing at who to compliment, like on yesterday's reported Angelina Jolie/People piece, currently the top post on the site (nice work, Doree Shafrir!). But just a design note: Can you get one of your tech-bot people to tag the author at the bottom? That's cleaner, and less distracting.
Hugs & Kisses,
The Loyal We [Gawker]