Hot Air Sold to Salem Communications

hot-air-logoMichelle Malkin’s Hot Air, one of the very most popular conservative blogs, has been acquired by Salem Communications, Mediaite‘s Colby Hall reports:

CPAC hasn’t even officially started and already its making news. Mediaite has learned that leading center-right web site Hot Air has been acquired by Salem Communications for an undisclosed sum. Sources close to the deal claim that Michelle Malkin, the conservative pundit and sole owner of Hot Air, has been in talks with Salem for some time, but the announcement was timed to coincide with the Conservative Political Action Conference, which opens tomorrow in Washington D.C.

Hot Air is one of the biggest, most influential conservative sites on the Web and was launched on April 24, 2006, with Michelle Malkin as founder/CEO (though she remains editorially focused on her own blog MichelleMalkin.com and her own writing and television appearances.) Hot Air is managed on a day-to-day basis by editors Ed Morrissey and the mysterious AllahPundit, who are reported to be part of the deal in the sale of to Salem, and absolutely essential to the core value of Hot Air. We are told that, from a user’s perspective, Hot Air will remain the same despite the change in ownership.

Morrissey writes “Neither Allahpundit nor I will have any official comment on this until tomorrow, but if you read our Twitter feeds last night, you already knew that a big announcement about Hot Air’s business status was on the way.  What I can tell you now is that Hot Air’s current mission and direction will not change, and that both AP and I will continue being part of Hot Air for the foreseeable future.”

One presumes that Salem is sincere on this score, in that the Hot Air property will lose most of its value if it becomes something other than what readers expect.   And Morrissey’s word on this has additional weight, in that he made the transition from his own solo site (Captain’s Quarters) to the more red meat-oriented Hot Air with no discernible change in his style or editorial choices.

And hearty congrats to Michelle Malkin on what one presumes was a lucrative buy-out.  While her politics are harder right than mine and her writing style more polemical, she’s a sweet lady and an incredibly hard worker.  She got started blogging more than a year after I did but hit the ground running, instantly figuring out how the game was played and doing it better than just about anyone else.  She’s managed to spin off the success of her eponymous blog into the Hot Air project, which became even bigger.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Alex Knapp says:

    she’s a sweet lady

    I think that describing someone who wrote a book that defends the practice of arresting and holding people in camps indefinitely because of their race as “sweet” is something of a stretch.

    But maybe that’s just me.

  2. Billy says:

    If Michelle Malkin is “center-right” then Scott Brown is a communist. Just sayin’.

  3. sam says:

    She is cute, though. I hear, however, she was cut from the squad for lack of rhythm.

  4. Mithras says:

    Oh yeah, she’s a real sweetheart. But good on her for making money off of blogging.

  5. James Joyner says:

    If Michelle Malkin is “center-right” then Scott Brown is a communist. Just sayin’.

    Malkin’s definitely hard right by American standards. Morrissey and AllahPundit are much more centrist, though, as they’ve got a more libertarian bent – especially AP.

  6. […] James Joyner discusses the acquisition of Hot Air by Salem media and unloads this gem: […]

  7. anjin-san says:

    Not a fan of her politics, but she is to be congratulated on her success as an entrepreneur.

  8. Brainster says:

    Yeah, Alex, how nasty of her to defend the practice that the Obama Administration is continuing.

  9. Derrick says:

    C’mon James,

    Like you, Ed’s blog was one of the Righty blogs that I’ve read and commented at for a while. There is a huuuuge difference between his style from Before HA and After HA. He’s pretty much a full-throated partisan now with a few exceptions (see Stacey McCain posts), where before I thought he was closer to yourself and say Rick Moran in being pretty introspective and thoughtful about his views. I’m sure his readership has increased but independence sure didn’t.

  10. TBogg says:

    As someone who has been making fun of Cap’n. Ed for more years than I like to count, I have to concur with Derrick. When Morrisey was at his old stomping grounds he was more of a lovable doofus. Since joining Hot Air it almost impossible to get through an entire post of his without feeling embarrassed for him when reading the sweaty contortions he puts himself through in order to make whatever point he’s trying to make.

    I guess the money is good enough that he no longer feels the insincerity that gnaws at his soul.

  11. […] just became a re-direct to Townhall.Like Michael Corleone said, it’s just business.UPDATE II: James Joyner:And hearty congrats to Michelle Malkin on what one presumes was a lucrative buy-out. While her […]

  12. Alex Knapp says:

    Brainster,

    What are you talking about? Neither the Obama nor (to their credit) the Bush Administration adopted Malkin’s proposed racial policies that she defended in “In Defense of Internment.”

  13. Dean says:

    She’s a twat.

  14. […] James Joyner, as always, is bit more civilized than the rest of us crazies: One presumes that Salem is sincere on this score, in that the Hot Air property will lose most of its value if it becomes something other than what readers expect.   And Morrissey’s word on this has additional weight, in that he made the transition from his own solo site (Captain’s Quarters) to the more red meat-oriented Hot Air with no discernible change in his style or editorial choices. […]

  15. spago says:

    What are you talking about? Neither the Obama nor (to their credit) the Bush Administration adopted Malkin’s proposed racial policies that she defended in “In Defense of Internment.”

    I know someone who thought it was a good idea though…

  16. wr says:

    She’s a sweet lady, unless you happen to be an eleven year-old child in favor of health insurance. Then she’ll do her best to destroy your life.

  17. Drew says:

    What was the price?? A nice payday in your future, james??

  18. steve says:

    I read her for a very short while. She is on my list of blogs to never read, even if linked to by someone else. I was especially bothered by her shoddy use of statistics by someone supposedly going to grad school.

    Steve

  19. bains says:

    And Morrissey’s word on this has additional weight, in that he made the transition from his own solo site (Captain’s Quarters) to the more red meat-oriented Hot Air with no discernible change in his style or editorial choices.

    This statement typifies why I have send your site well down my bookmark list James. As a fiscally conservative atheist, I have followed both Morrissey and Allahpundit for years, precisely because they have offered honest center right opinions (with links to the honest left center dissenters). The kind your site used to offer with much more regularity.

    Hot Air offers right red-meat? Seems to me that the meat is the same. It is your perspective (and consequently, your site) that has become bluer.

  20. James Joyner says:

    As a fiscally conservative atheist, I have followed both Morrissey and Allahpundit for years, precisely because they have offered honest center right opinions (with links to the honest left center dissenters). The kind your site used to offer with much more regularity.

    Hot Air offers right red-meat? Seems to me that the meat is the same. It is your perspective (and consequently, your site) that has become bluer.

    Hot Air was a red meat site in the early days. Remember, it was launched as a video spin-off of Malkin’s site and used to feature Malkin, AP, and Bryan, along with some other contributors. The Vent was a daily feature, etc.

    The move away from videos and the bringing in of Ed after Bryan left changed the tenor of the site completely. But a lot of Ed’s old readers were very worried that going to Hot Air would change him.

    I don’t think I’ve become “bluer” over the years, although I’m more cynical about the GOP’s fealty to its declared principles. But a few years of run-away spending with Republicans in charge will do that.

  21. John S. says:

    But a few years of run-away spending with Republicans in charge will do that.

    When have the years with Republicans in charge not resulted in run-away spending, James?

    Seems like every time in modern history a Republican is president, the national debt goes up dramatically.

  22. […] Ed Morrissey shares his perspective, and links to articles about the acquisition by Jazz Shaw and James Joyner (who showed up here yesterday wearing a nice, conservatively cut suit—and bright, lime-green […]