Oh, so that The Bold Italic site is owned by Gannet Co. Inc, America’s largest newspaper publisher?
Well that explains a lot.
It certainly explains why a high-overhead, low-income* website manages to keep chugging along, year after year.
A mystery solved.
Now, part of what makes the long-form website TBI the worst in town is the focus on graphics, which, you know, per se, are perfectly serviceable.
Via Raven Keller – wow, a credit where it belongs. How, how novel that is!
But IMO, JMO, all that graphics stuff gets in the way of TBI’s writers making their fucking points.
The one time I saw a bit on TBI where the writer made her point quickly and clearly was time that gal wrote about the comments people made about her broken iPhone screen. Guess what. It didn’t have any concomitant graphics at all. And I thought, wow, no graphics = better TBI. (And I think it had been six months since I followed a link and took a look at The Bold Italic, oh well.)
Now I’ve heard the spiel from the Gannett people about how great it is that the average reader spends five minutes on each TBI webpage or something, but TBI, you’re on the road to ruin.
Speaking of which, here comes The Uptown Almanac with a take-down.
“NEWCOMERS THREATEN TOWN! WILL DESTROY SAN FRANCISCO WITH THEIR “TELEGRAPHS” AND “INDOOR PLUMBING!”
Friends, our Way of Life in pleasant San Francisco is under siege from a wave of NE’ER-DO-WELLS, WHIPPERSNAPPERS and DANDIES who have never laid eyes on a gold pan or sluiced a river or skinned a beaver JUST FOR FUN. I am sad to report they are INVADING OUR TOWN in waves with their newfangled TELEGRAPHY MACHINES and WRIST-WATCHES.
It used to be a man could buy a perfectly good mud-brick cabin with PANO VUs on the side of Russky Hill for ten dollars. NO MORE. Respectable cobblers, drapers, and whores are being driven from their homes by these VARMINTS who will pay TWELVE OR THIRTEEN DOLLARS for a shanty.”
And so on.
So, TBI, you are the online version of 7×7 magazine. which is horrible.
What you should be instead is the online version of San Francisco Magazine, which has had some excellent long-form pieces lately, the past year especially.
*How much money can you make from a site with a six-figure Alexa Traffic Rank? Not that much, brother! Let me assure you.