Why OYIT is Better Than Gawker

By Scott B. 

Most of the inhabitants of Brooklyn, my newly adopted home, would probably assume that a "Gawker of the Midwest" would consist of snarky takes on prize pig competitions or not-quite-ironic-enough nods to things Midwesterners shouldn't like (abortion, The Death Tax, finger foods without Ranch). And they would be right. That's exactly what a gossip site would look like were it to ride the crest of some strange cultural wave through a vortex, leaving New York City, and transplanting itself in an alternate universe. A universe where the Chicago-St.Louis-Kansas City corridor serves as the national media echo chamber. Thank God that we don't live in that place. Thank God that in our universe Gawker is an East Coast version of One Year In Texas.

In the year that I was born, Time Magazine voted The Computer the Man of the Year. So when I tell you that the internet has destroyed both time and space, displacing the notion of chronology, please understand that it is an argument from experience.

It doesn't matter if Gawker was created before OYIT, or even that it has more advertising and less content. Topical snark has tainted any and all communications emanating from New York City since the invention of the monocle. And the formula has been the same ever since: person with monocle guffaws at poor people, poor people laugh at the pun headlines printed in the Post at the rich and monocled's expense, and a third group swoops in to make fun of them both. And themselves. They're very self-aware. Compare that formula with a template post on OYIT: A conversation with Glenn about whether it is more unethical to commit a hate crime or own a sweat shop.

Do you see the difference? One website is a meat grinder, mushing the talents of young, poor aspiring liberals and trust-funded nihilists through the alluring but darkly sinister gears of a cliche snark machine. The other is a semi-legitimate forum for a group of friends to do linguistic handstands, or just experience the essence of each others beings in absentia. One is derivative and alienating. The other is frontiersman-like and warm. And wasn't that the intent when DARPA created the internet? For disgruntled twentysomethings whose hearts are in the right places to seek each other out and connect on fundamental levels? Or was it meant for the alums of the Little Red Schoolhouse to walk the well-trodden path of their Midtown ancestors and make fun of tits while being neurotic about sex? Surely we're scandalized already. I'd rather talk to Glenn.


  1. I wish OYIT was as popular as Gawker. Then I'd get paid.

    Good article Scott, welcome to OYIT.

  2. Scott writes about the Midwest the way someone only could who lived there for a few years of his life but has seen a few movies about it.

  3. It's more unethical to commit a hate crime as long as you love your little sweatees. I've looked at Gawker before, but have never been able to read anything on it. I'm already ashamed of myself enough for reading Politico. I'm glad that we're frontiersmen, it makes me feel better about not bathing regularly. You've done a great job bottling up OYIT into an acid dropper (is that a mixed metaphor?). I hope to read more of you talking to Glenn!

  4. this is wonderful. i'm so happy you're writing for OYIT.

  5. gawker writers barely get paid -- difference is negligible, trust me.

  6. I don't understand what this "Gawker" stuff is.