BOSTON. Lines snaked around the Back Bay Stop & Shop here today as if a nor'easter were on its way, and regular customers were more than a bit miffed at the inconvenience. "It's those bloggers," said Emily Nardello, a retired music teacher who moved back into the city with her husband. "I heard one of 'em say something called Open Salon is closing."
Better get extra ketchup
The panicked look on some patrons' faces told the story in greater detail; Open Salon, a social media website, was rumored to be on the brink of folding after Salon Media Group, its parent company, reported a loss of $997,000 on revenues of $1.3 million for the last quarter of 2011.
CEO Cindy Jeffers: "Open Salon is a Shell No-Pest Strip for spambots."
"Yes, that's a lot of money for any company to lose," said Assistant Controller Jeffrey Thulenberg. "But there may be some spare change in the 'Tippem' jars and we haven't checked our other pair of pants."
"Like any media company, we are constantly exploring strategic options in a changing environment for online news and bladda bladda bladda," said newly-appointed Salon.com CEO Cindy Jeffers. "Newsweek sold for a buck to The Daily Beast, my guess is we could get $2.50--or more--for Open Salon."
Bloggers wait in line to back-up posts.
Salon.com is a seventeen-year-old website that was a pioneer in online news and highbrow political and cultural coverage. "Like any seventeen-year-old who thinks it knows something about politics and culture, it can be insufferable," said media critic Jonathan Wolstead. "On the other hand, the vituperative comments by frustrated writers who read the stuff are highly entertaining."
"I'm shocked--shocked--to find that blogging is going on in here."
In addition to canned goods, frightened OS bloggers were buying flashlights, candles, blankets and copies of "US Weekly" magazine. Others promised to continue as part of an OS underground resistance in the event the site is shut down. "They treat us like we're peons," said Michele Friedman, who maintains her anonymity by using the screen name "Shelly Friedman." "What they don't realize is there are lots of money-losing websites we can give our writing to for free--they're not the only game in town."