Malkin – Pajamas Media Mystery Solved
There’s a minor blogstorm brewing over why Michelle Malkin, second only to InstaPundit Glenn Reynolds among the Pajamas Media/Open Source Media/OSM/Pajamas Media contributors, is not yet running Pajamas advertising.
A friend of Steve H. noticed the situation, causing him to ponder how PM could possibly afford to pay her enough to replace what she was making with BlogAds when she wasn’t even running their ads. He offered a theory:
This reminds me of the Laker Airways story. If memory servesÃ¢€”donÃ¢€™t be shy about checking my facts, because IÃ¢€™m not going toÃ¢€”Freddy Laker started a cheap airline that gave the other airlines fits. So they found a way to kill him. Because they were bigger business better able to take a hit, they sold tickets at a loss and undercut him until he was finished. I believe thatÃ¢€™s correct.
Is that what weÃ¢€™re seeing with BlogAds now? Is the Pajamafia squeezing BlogAds out by relying on two sugar daddies to pay their bills? Fortunately, BlogAds can replace the seventy sites PJM took away. Still, it seems like an unwholesome way to do business. And for conservatives to be involved with something that smacks of a Soviet industrial subsidyÃ¢€¦thatÃ¢€™s just gross.
In a follow-up post, he muses,
Let’s see. Either PJM has no ads for her, or there’s something about the ads that makes them unacceptable to her. She can’t run BlogAds because she has a contract with PJM. Or maybe Henry Copeland won’t take her back until PJM dies. And she can’t talk about it.
They have to be paying her. If they weren’t, she’d bolt and get some real ads. She doesnÃ¢€™t have to go back to Henry; there are other companies that would buy her space. If PJM werenÃ¢€™t paying her, theyÃ¢€™d probably be in breach of contract, so she wouldn’t be obligated to honor the non-compete agreement. At least I don’t think so.
Maybe they don’t want their bigger blogs running those silly Doubleclick banners, because of the ridicule it would draw. No, that can’t be right. They run the ads on their main site.
She’d have to be nuts to give up six or seven grand a month out of loyalty to the Gang That Couldn’t Blog Straight. That can’t be the explanation.
I doubt she has that kind of loyalty. In an interview, she seemed to take pains to distance herself from the management of PJM. I think she knew these guys were flying on instruments.
Moxie extrapolates some figures and doesn’t get it, either.
Dennis the Peasant sees “Trouble in paradise?” but offers no explanation. He makes up for this with a nice photo of Adrienne Barbeau in her prime.
I took the unusual step of asking Michelle Malkin about the matter via a short email. Five minutes later, I got the following response:
It’s a very simple technical issue. I’ve been waiting for Pajamas Media to send me the coding to put the ads up on my site. There are a lot of PM bloggers waiting. I’m in line like everyone else–but I think all the tinfoil-hat-rattling is going to get me bumped up.
Oh. Somehow, I was hoping for something a little juicer.
Now, granted, one would think they would have figured out a way to get the ad code out to all their 70 bloggers by now, let alone all of them averaging more than 100,000 unique visits a day. But being slow in rolling out their ads is a little less interesting than bilking investors out of millions or a blogospheric clash of the titans.
(As an aside, I guarantee you Henry Copeland would take her back faster than she responded to my email. Indeed, all she would need to do is paste the BlogAds code back into her site template.)
Update: A commenter apparently received the same response from Malkin and wonders whether I stole the above from his blog or whether Malkin is answering the same question the same way to different people. Given that I had never visited, nor indeed heard of, his blog before getting his comment and that I link other blogs all the time, even for pointing me to articles in major papers, the latter seems more likely. And, frankly, I’m not sure why, having typed an answer to a question in an email, a person with a modicum of experience with computers wouldn’t cut-and-paste it if called upon to answer it again.