January 31, 2009

Why Stupid People Shouldn't Blog

Let me type this  s l o w l y  so that certain people who don't seem to be able to read with any level of detail can follow along.

The Pajamas Media advertising network—responsible for those ads you generally ignore see in the sidebar over there to your right—is going the way of the digital dodo on March 31. Pajamas Media, the portal site that features news and opinion, is not closing. The blogfather, Glenn Reynolds, will still be found at

Only the advertising network, which never made any money, is going away. Pajamas Media and live on, and are in an apparent expansion phase.

The network going down to hurt some good bloggers who depended upon the network as their primary sources of income. They have my sympathy and sincere prayers. As someone who worked in web development contracting for many years, I know the fears of suddenly becoming jobless with a family to support as well or better than many, and the stress that can cause.

But I'm equally confident that those bloggers who were drawing enough traffic to draw significant income from their advertising, like Ace and Jeff and Rusty, have the kind of unique voices and talent that may fair well on their own or other blog advertising networks. They, like the cheesy song says, will survive.

And while we get along on almost nothing, I think John Cole over at Ballon Juice strikes just the right tone.

So I don’t have to keep answering this repeatedly in the comments, yes, I will no longer be with the PJ Media network starting 1 April. They are apparently moving on/the business model didn't work/whatever. Life goes on.

I understand there is an inordinate amount of bad feelings and some hostility being chucked around, and I want no part in it. Roger Simon and the others at PJ always kept their word to me. From where I sit, PJ Media was an ad portal that provided advertising content for this site, and that was about it. I never understood claims at the beginning of this several years ago that somehow I was "losing my independence" or the rest of the nonsense for signing up with them. As I have stated repeatedly, maybe others had different experiences, but the company was great to me. They always kept their word, their staff was top-notch and great to work with (and I really hope they find jobs quickly/keep their jobs), and Roger Simon was a great person to do business with the past couple years. I signed a contract through the end of March, PJ Media and I are both honoring it, and they are moving on to something different. This sort of thing happens hundreds of thousands of times every day all over the world, and is really rather unremarkable.

Life goes on, indeed.

As you might guess, the dissolution of the Pajamas advertising network will not disrupt things greatly here at CY. I'll still write feature stories for Pajamas Media published at the still very active (And judging by the growing comments sections, more active) portal, and I'm already in discussion with another exciting potential partner who may be rolling some advertising and writing opportunities my way.

We encounter, we adapt, and overcome.

So let's move forward, shall we?

Posted by Confederate Yankee at January 31, 2009 04:25 PM

Don't forget to bury the dead..

Posted by: lasertex at January 31, 2009 06:30 PM

Your snarling, sarcastic tone aimed at critics of PJM and its recent dissolution (call it whatever you want, the core behind its founding was the ad network) is not, perhaps, the best way to "move forward." It makes you sound petty. If you want to defend Simon and the other founders of PJM, you could do so without insulting the intelligence of other (now-former) PJM bloggers.

Posted by: PatHMV at February 2, 2009 09:51 AM

Pat, I'm aiming my post DIRECTLY at those bloggers too lazy or stupid to do a minimal level of research or basic fact-checking before publishing their rants.

I didn't aim criticism at so much as a single critic that had their facts straight, or even a plausible opinion. I struck specifically at those who had their facts wrong about what took place. Nor did I in any way defend Simon or PJM in the least.

I'm castigating those who half-read things (and linked three examples), fill in the blanks with what they want to hear, and then go on a fact-free, self-important bender.

Kinda. Like. You. Just. Did.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at February 2, 2009 10:19 AM

Well, considering that Roger Simon's own letter said "we have decided to wind down the Pajamas Media Blogger and advertising network," I really don't see what, exactly, the folks you lambasted got wrong. Culture 11 said: "Now it looks like Pajamas Media network is shutting down." I likewise see nothing erroneous in anything Pamela or Ann Althouse said. It looks to me like you're pissed at them because they're adopting a critical tone against PJM, not because they lack basic reading comprehension. Perhaps you think they lack the ability to read because they didn't bother to note that the portal would remain. On the other hand, perhaps they felt that the portal is a relatively insignificant part of PJM as a whole. PJM did not sell itself on "hey, we're creating a kick-ass portal, guys!"

So what, exactly, did they get wrong? What exactly is "Pajamas Media" without the "Pajamas Media Blogger and advertising network"?

Posted by: PatHMV at February 2, 2009 10:36 AM

The "Pajamas Media Blogger and advertising network" is the little "Pajamas Media Network blogger" tag and three ads on individual blogs, and the larger collective network of blogs that featured those ads. Nothing more, and nothing less.

The portal,, is a destination site featuring news and opinion features (and yes its creation was a key part of selling the original business plan, and the pitch to bloggers).

Pajamas Media is the company that ran both the ads and the portal.

These critics thought Pajamas Media the company was shutting down completely--a neat trick, considering they haven't laid off a single full-time employee that I'm aware of.

Atlas thought the company was going away. I know this for a fact, because we exchanged emails. The smug poster at culture 11 thought the same thing, because he griped about the aggregation and portal content, not just the ad network. The same with Althouse who declared in her headline that the entire enterprise has collapsed.

They got wrong, well, just about everything of substance. That you can't seem to grasp how far off they were even after having it explained to you for now the third time, you're obviously more confused than even they were.

The company is expanding, and chopped off part of the entity that was not working in order to streamline ops. That is the polar opposite of the story these and several other ignorant bloggers told, and is a fiction you apparently still believe.

Pajamas Media is a new media company, not an advertising company. It always has been. Advertising was just one part of the business, and it happened not to work out even as the portal worked and forays into video on the portal led the management to believe, for whatever reason, that the PJTV spin-off was worth pursuing.

I could care less that people are mad at PJM, and I haven't said word one against other bloggers that were critical of it, from those that always hoped it would fail, to those who feel they got screwed. The only bloggers I've gone after are those sloppy hacks who lack reading comprehension and went on the offensive without even understanding what they were talking about.

Any perception that I'm defending Pajamas or broadly attacking critics is a flight a fancy coming from your own imagination, not the result of anything I've written.

Like those I linked, you let your misperceptions get the better of you, and spouted off without knowing the facts.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at February 2, 2009 11:14 AM

Well, I don't see any of that in the posts to which you linked. All Culture 11 said in the post to which you linked was: "Now it looks like Pajamas Media network is shutting down (they're going to go into vlogging fulltime?)."

I can't speak to what AtlasShrugged said to you in her e-mails, of course, but the post to which you linked said only: "Pajama media is shutting down the blog." That to me doesn't seem like an unfair interpretation of Simon's notice that the PJM Blogger and Ad Network were shutting down.

So the company may be expanding, but it is doing something very different from what it did before. It began as a network of bloggers, and it does not appear it will be that any more.

Perhaps you would have preferred them to focus on what remains rather than what is disappearing. But given that what is folding was a huge portion of the core of PJM from its beginning, I don't see how it demonstrates "stupidity" to write about the part that's disappearing without tossing in umpteen caveats and fine print. Heck, AtlasShrugged posted the entire Roger Simon letter.

You keep saying it's just the advertising network that's disappearing. But Simon's letter says that it's the Pajamas Media Blogger and advertising network which is disappearing. Got it, Mr. Reading-Challenged? AND. Two things going away. The blogger network AND the advertising network.

Here's PJM's own "about us story:

"Pajamas Media began in 2005 as an affiliation of 90 of the most influential weblogs on the Internet. They were linked together as an advertising network, but the intention was to provide a significant alternative to mainstream media. Two years later PJM has expanded its reach. Besides adding to its blog network, through its portal, PJM now provides exclusive news and opinion 24/7 in text, video and podcast from correspondents in over forty countries. Pajamas Media also has its own weekly show on XM satellite radio – PJM Political – and syndicates its original material like a news agency."

The ad network and the blogger network are both gone now. Those are the FIRST TWO THINGS which began PJM. The core has disappeared.

You want to call attention to the fact that PJM is still alive as a legal entity, doing different stuff than what it started out doing (much of it, other than the portal, very non-bloggy to my way of thinking), that's fine. But to insult others the way you did, with as little justification as you've been able to provide, makes you look like the stupid one, not them.

Posted by: PatHMV at February 2, 2009 12:13 PM

The effing title of Atlas' blog entry was "Pajamas Media Closes its Doors" and says in her lede "Pajama media is shutting down the blog." She clearly thought Pajamas Media was done entirely a point she reiterated via email, declaring it very confusing and saying she would try to pay more attention.

Likewise, culture11 declared "Pajamas Media goes down...." as the headline and then went on to complain about the content of the portal... he didn't grasp that there even was an ad network, much less that that was the only part shutting down.

Likewise, a less-than-sharp Althouse declared "The Pajamas Media blogging enterprise has collapsed," completely clueless in her inference that the company was shutting down in order to switch to PJTV.

If you simply can't or won't read the words posted here and on the pages I linked, and instead insist on substituting was passes for thought and interpretation in your mind, then we're at am impasse.

Further, my slow friend, the "PJM Blogger and Ad Network" was always one thing in reality, not two, as you so doggedly insist. It was the ads and "Pajamas Media Network Blogger" on the individual pages, and a blogroll on the portal... that's it!

The blog network was the ad network. "They" were the same entity; the terms were used more or less interchangeably, with the "ad network" used specifically when talking about the ads that appears on multiple blogs, and the blog network describing the sites on which the ads occurred. For the vast majority it is a distinction without a difference, and the fact that you've now been reduced to arguing the meaning of the intention of the word "and" should be a strong clue at just how nonsensical your ill-informed, combative argument has been from the start.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at February 2, 2009 01:00 PM

Well, if you don't care about how much of an ass you seemed like, I can't help that. I've read all of the posts you linked to, and I still say you went WAY out of your way to call "stupid" people who at WORST merely misunderstood what Roger Simon was saying when he said the PJM blogger and advertising network was shutting down.

"PJM completely changing focus, shutting down its earliest and most visible function; corporate entity to continue." Sure, that would have been hyper-technically more correct.

You COULD have simply said "hey, it's not dead, guys!" and clarified what had happened; that's what I assumed you were doing when I read the link at Instapundit which sent me to this post. But no, you decided to insist that (at worst) confusion was rank stupidity and an inability to read.

Whatever. Me, I don't see the need to call people dumb and stupid if there's any other possible explanation, and even then I find that, as the saying goes, you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. Your post, rather than providing a public service of providing clarifying information, made me believe you are an asshole. Perhaps you have some long-running feud with those other folks of which I am ignorant. But I'm a reasonable, decent guy who doesn't stop by this blog very much, stumbled across it, and was offended by the tone and thought you were fundamentally wrong in your criticisms, based just on reading the posts you linked to. Clearly, you're not interested in feedback and have plenty enough traffic, so I won't trouble you again.

Posted by: PatHMV at February 2, 2009 04:08 PM

Who are the stupid people who should not blog?

Posted by: Joe at February 4, 2009 10:01 AM

do you mean Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Dick Durbin, etc. shouldn't be BLOGGING....?????

Posted by: danpa at February 4, 2009 04:15 PM

Is it OK if stupid people still read the blogs?

Posted by: Smorgasbord at February 4, 2009 05:25 PM