Scott Moore, Yahoo!'s head of news and finance, said the idea to add Gawker came up over dinner with its founder and publisher Nick Denton. "It seemed like a natural thing to do, because it's a very complementary relationship," said Moore.
Every day, dozens of posts from Gawker Media's stable will now accompany offerings from over 100 other publishers including CNN, ABC News, and the Huffington Post.
Yahoo! will sell the online ad space beside Gawker's content on Yahoo! News, according to Moore. He added that Yahoo! would naturally welcome business from advertisers that support Gawker's content on its own sites.
The Gawker Media titles in aggregate currently pull some 4.5 million unique visitors, and over 38 million pageviews, per month, according to Gawker Media. Yahoo! News in October drew more than 25 million uniques, according to Nielsen//NetRatings.
JupiterResearch analyst Gary Stein said the deal could help Yahoo! more broadly establish itself as a media powerhouse. "They're going to get huge benefits from this traffic-wise," said Stein. He added that he is particularly impressed by Yahoo!'s amassing of unique editorial voices like the Huffington Post, and now Gawker. "Compared to the TV shows and stuff, which I don't think is all that exciting, these voices are really giving Yahoo! an edge over Google and AOL," he said. Earlier this week, America Online and Warner Bros. announced that AOL would start streaming old TV shows for free in January.
Yahoo!'s deal with Arianna Huffington's A-list assisted blog/news site--which Yahoo! began hosting in July, soon after the site's May debut--may provide insight into Gawker's future with Yahoo!
Huffington's site drew a respectable 702,000 unique visits during its first month of operation, but this figure was far lower than the million-plus visitors more established blogs like Daily Kos and Instapundit regularly rack up each month.
In October, the number of unique visits to Huffington's site has risen to 866,000, according to Nielsen//NetRatings. Yahoo! News referred 5.09 percent of TheHuffingtonPost.com's at-home visitors in October, Nielsen found.
For the record: Gawker is Manhattan's news media and gossip site; Defamer does Los Angeles media and gossip; Wonkette covers Washington politics; Gizmodo is a technology and gadget site; and Lifehacker reviews product downloads, Web sites, and other hacker pursuits.
The relationship will soon expand to include content from other Gawker Media outlets, which Yahoo! plans to include within Yahoo! News' opinion and entertainment sections.