Or: Consumer-Made Media and the Almighty Buck
Jason Calacanis is the P.T. Barnum of the weblog world. Barnum took a hirsute woman and turned her into The Bearded Lady. Calacanis took something as banal as paying writers to write and turned it into An Issue That Must Be Discussed. And I'm glad, because it is.
If you don't know the story, here's a recap. Calacanis sold Weblogs Inc, a network of topical blogs, to AOL for a staggering amount of money. Then he was put in charge of netscape.com, another AOL purchase, which was once the most visited site on the web but had since been micromanaged into a wasted wreck of pointless marketing nonsense. Calacanis announced that he was simply going to clone the tech news darling Digg. And then he did.
The new Netscape differentiated itself from Digg in three key ways: It was uglier, it worked against its own bottoms-up process by pegging stories approved by staffers at the top of the page, and they started paying the top contributors.
Exactly two years ago today, JPG Magazine began with a simple mission to honor the amazing work coming out of the online photographic community. Today, after six issues, on JPG's 2nd birthday, JPG has been reborn.
Everything is new. You can now create a membership and upload your photos. Members can directly create the magazine by submitting their work, and voting for other members' submissions. And then there's the magazine itself: bigger, fatter, less expensive, more often, and, soon, subscribeable.
I feel like what I imagine fathers feel like: Proud, happy, exhausted, and in desperate need of a nap and a shower.
But enough about me. Go see the new baby.
Heather and I are in Chicago for a family visit. We're all gathered at a nice restaurant for dinner - Heather's sister Claire, Claire's husband Owen, and their two boys: Eamon, 6, and Hugh, 2. Dinner is lovely, and the paper tablecloth is gradually covered in spent tic-tac-toe grids, doodles, and food scraps.
I've noticed, in the short time I've spent with parents, that they basically do not eat when their kids do. They eat in the spare moments in between questions and/or tantrums, and then chow down on fast forward just before the staff comes to clear the dishes.
This section is called Just a Thought. It's a blog where I post little pieces of what I'm thinking about at the moment. This page shows thoughts from September 2006, including:
Will Post for Money
22 September 2006
Come with me to Denmark
19 September 2006
18 September 2006
The Kid Always Gets the Last Word
3 September 2006
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Working the web since 1995, Derek Powazek is the creator of many award-winning websites, a couple of which still exist. Derek is the cofounder of JPG Magazine and the CCO of 8020 Publishing. Derek lives in San Francisco with his wife, two nutty Chihuahuas, a grumpy cat, and a house full of plants named Fred. More »
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Will Post for Money 22 September 2006
Come with me to Denmark 19 September 2006
JPG 2.0 18 September 2006
The Kid Always Gets the Last Word 3 September 2006