Fun with Stats

Even Nate Silver Can’t Predict When a Deadspin Commenter Will Get Laid

This comes up when you Google "Nate Silver baller." (Photo: Mashable)

Statistical genius and maybe-witch Nate Silver popped by Gawker Media’s sports site, Deadspin, today for a little Q&A session. Mr. Silver answered some interesting questions that have been bouncing around the web ever since his mic drop moment, wherein he accurately predicted the electoral outcome of all 50 states.

Mr. Silver wrote that he does plan to make predictions for the elections in 2014 and 2016, and that being suddenly famous is “Completely terrifying. Still, file under ‘Good Problems to Have.’” Read More

Internet Drama

Reddit Readies for Brewing ‘Inter-Website War’; Major Subreddits Ban Links to Gawker Media

(Photo: Says-it.com)

If websites are one big dysfunctional family, Reddit and Gawker Media are the two drunken uncles who can’t stop fighting over who has to pick grandpa up at the airport. Now, the two sites are preparing for a grueling “inter-website war” that threatens to rob netizens of wifi packet rations and provide hours of popcorn-eating fodder.

After news broke on Reddit that Gawker writer Adrian Chen was preparing to publish a post revealing the personal information of Reddit user Violentacrez, a moderator of the controversial subreddit r/creepshots, Reddit began to batten down the hatches. The politics subreddit, which boasts almost 2 million subscribers, announced that it will ban all links to Gawker Media properties–including Gawker, Jezebel and Lifehacker–in response to the news that Mr. Chen may be preparing to publish personal details about Violentacruz. Read More

Crowdpower

Deadspin Launches Indiegogo Campaign, Asks America to Determine Market Value of Ryan Lochte DickPic

(Photo: Indiegogo)

“How Much Would You Pay To See A Photo Of Ryan Lochte’s Alleged Penis?” begs a headline on the irreverent sports blog, Deadspin. The post, which went up a little over an hour ago, is illustrated by a photo of Gawker Media employees clustered around a computer screen looking (and laughing) at an alleged photo of Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte’s penis.

The pic, which is “a neck-down bathroom-mirror self-portrait, in which the tip of the penis almost but not quite reaches into the sink basin,” was provided by a source, who is demanding a fee. Deadspin has decided to start a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo, probably because Kickstarter doesn’t consider dickpics “art” (subjective!). Read More

Commenting Wars

Branching Out: How Josh Miller Went From Princeton Dropout to Alley Darling in Just Nine Months

Big day for Josh Miller. (joshm.co)

On a recent Wednesday afternoon, Josh Miller, the precocious 21-year-old Princeton dropout behind Branch, one of tech’s most buzzed-about new startups, took The Observer on a tour of the Obvious Corporation, a growing operation helmed by the cofounders of Twitter that advises and invests in an elite set of fledgling tech companies, Branch among them.

The San Francisco office radiated industrial California coziness, with tall windows and exposed pipes, dark grey walls and a fridge overflowing with Vitamin Water. Mr. Miller, who is tall and insouciant, with the laid-back linguistic tenor of one who spent his childhood in Santa Monica, bustled about the office, seemingly unthreatened by the fact that he is both much younger and less experienced than the majority of Obvious employees.

“Check this out!” he called from a breezy conference room with a panoramic view of downtown San Francisco. He pointed to a wet bar fully stocked with top-shelf bottles. “You know, I’m just out of college, so sometimes I’m, like, afraid to drink any of this because it’s so expensive! It’s like, where’s the Franzia?” he joked, referring to the cheap boxed wine favored by destitute college students. Read More

10 Questions

10 Questions for Drew Magary, the Most Actually-Read Writer on The Internet*

Drew Magary, The Most Actually-Read* Writer On The Internet. It's true.*

Last week, Read It Later—the site and app that, like Instapaper, allows readers to “save” articles for later revisiting—released a series of charts in conjunction with long-form writing aggregator LongReads detailing statistics they had gathered over 2011. The first chart was of the “Most Saved” authors on the internet.

The second chart was far more telling: Those whose articles were both saved and eventually revisited by those who had saved them. In other words, they build a chart of some of the most actually-read individual writers on the internet, and at the top of that list was Deadspin blogger and columnist Drew “Balls Deep” Magary, whose cult following netted the (in equal measures, profane and profound) writer a book deal and bylines with the likes of GQ.

We wanted to know: What’s it like to be the most actually-read* author on the internet? So, we asked. And he answered: Read More

THINGS TO READ RIGHT THIS SECOND

The Difference Between Things Clicked ‘Read Later’ and Things That Actually Are Read Later: LifeSlackers

1_saved_authors (1)

Yesterday, content-saving service Read It Later—which, like Instapaper, allows you to save the web pages you want to read eventually but don’t have time for quite right now—released a list of data about the most “Read It Later”-clicked authors on the entire whole big bad Internet, which goes hand-in-hand with their celebration of the surpassing of four million users.

But that wasn’t the only list they released.    Read More