Gawker's ambitions to become a more gentle site can't happen in the hands of founder and CEO Nick Denton, the site's former editor-in-chief A.J. Daulerio told HuffPost Live on Tuesday.
“I believe the only way Gawker becomes 20 percent nicer is if Nick Denton leaves," he said, referring to a widely-circulated comment Denton made to his staff in address of the site's "reboot," which was poised to start Monday.
The remark about being nicer came after Denton decided to pull a controversial post that outed a media executive, which Denton said he regrets publishing in the first place. Resignations by the site's editor-in-chief Max Read and executive editor Tommy Craggs came shortly thereafter, and five additional editors have accepted buy-outs since, according to Capital.
Daulerio has established himself as being among Denton's inner-circle, with Denton calling him "one of the best and most loyal colleagues." In mid-June, before this controversy caught fire at Gawker, Daulerio joined Denton and Craggs at dinner with Mark Cuban, who was reportedly discussing a financial stake in the company.
While Daulerio deflected discussing Cuban's interest in the site during his HuffPost Live interview, the Ratter founder hinted that a Denton departure may not be out of the question.
"I think he wants to leave," he said. "I think he's tired. ... I think at some points when Nick uses the phrase 'ashamed about a story' and ... with everything that's rolling around the company at this point, and that there is a management team in place right now that he's very secure with ... well, what's going to happen two years from now?"
"Eventually, yeah," he continued, "I think we are looking at a time that there could be a Gawker without Nick Denton."
Watch more from A.J. Daulerio's conversation with HuffPost Live here.
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