New York Times to Buy About.com for $410 million

New York Times to Buy About.com for $410 million: Go figure. I’m about to prove my theory that you should never trust a reporter (or a blogger) with math. This is my second attempt to do this:  Okay, let’s do some calculating. The NYT is paying $410 million for a network of 500 weblogs that collectively have 22 million visitors each month. $410 million / 500 = $820,000 per weblog.

Update: My coding and math are messed up. I’ll post my last sentence again in a moment.

Update II: Okay. Another way to look at the math. They have 22,000,000 unique visitors per month. Receiving $410 million in cash means each unique visitor (clarification: or, perhaps, a better way to put it is, “the average visitor”) per month is being valued as $18.64. (410,000,000/22,000,000)

Update III: Enough of my faux analysis. Rafat and Staci actually have some legitimate insight at PaidContent.org. For example, they insightfully recall the last
conversational media venture of the NYT, “Abuzz”  — which, as I recall was A-bust. (Hey, but I’m not one to throw rocks.)

Update IV: VC Fred Wilson thinks it’s a smart deal. I’ll take his word for it.

(via: BuzzMachine)

Noonan flashback:

Noonan flashback: Since the blogosphere is today collectively declaring Peggy Noonan the greatest writer ever, I thought I would link back to an essay she wrote in November, 1998,
for the magazine Forbes ASAP. When I first read the essay in 1998, I
found it disturbing and, frankly, very un-Noonan, as it was so starkly
foreboding. It was written at the height of economic boom times but had
a somberness that haunted me for months. (Great writing can do that.)

On the morning of September 11, 2001, I thought of Peggy Noonan’s
essay. I spent a couple of days tracking it down to see if it said what
I recalled it saying. It did. Start reading from Heading III (“if you’re in a good mood, stop reading here and go hug the kids and
relax and have a drink and a nice pointless conversation with your
spouse…”) and you’ll see why I think her skills soar, not only as a writer, but as a prophet.

Winer calls Noonan column “a gem”

Winer calls Noonan column “a gem”: Dave Winer calls this essay by Peggy Noonan
the best explaination of blogging he’s ever seen. “Savor every word,”
he says. “It’s a gem.” (For those who don’t know, Dave Winer is perhaps
the key figure in the creation of what we now call blogging, including
his leadership in the creation of RSS and podcasting….Also, for those
who don’t know, Dave Winer rarely says anything written by a right wing
columnist should be savored as a gem.)

Update:  After
spending some time with this column, I have to agree with the chorus of
neo-Noonanites pointing to her column.  This is absolutely, the
finest essay ever written about blogging. If you work in publishing and
don’t read this and take it to heart, you are hopelessly without a clue.