A daddy blog.

28 August 2007

Hef and the Future of Sports Blogging

When I read Playboy editor Chris Napolitano's interview in the Times where he talked about opening a Playboy club in Macao, that was enough. I don't care if Macao is going to be three times as big as Vegas. China's freaking cliche at this point, and the world desperately needs Hef's empire to stay focused on content.

Ever since my boss created FanHouse (one year ago today) on AOL, other companies (most notably ESPN) have begun pulling sportsbloggers inside their sites. In the best cases, the corporations haven't messed with the bloggers' voices.

But one thing about sports blogging that most mass media companies doesn't want to touch is the gratuitous boobies one finds all over MJD's Trim tag or Saint Andrew's Net on With Leather or anything on Our Book of Scrap. One exception to that trend is Playboy:
With the decline of the newsstand, we’re exploring ways to pump up distribution online (see above), and we’re building up our college marketing. And I don’t see any other mass publication addressing trends in sexuality or the falling of taboos better than Playboy, do you?
Hell if I know, I read blogs all day. But the interesting thing about the more lad mag-ish end of the sports blogosphere is that it perfectly lives up the cliche that people read it for the articles. The boobs really are just wallpaper. I doubt anyone goes to visits any of the blogs above if they don't enjoy the writers greatly.

At some point, the online arm of Maxim or Playboy or some outfit is going to realize just how ideal the boob-heavy end of the sportsblogging pool is for them. You take the basic editorial mix that independent bloggers have developed, you give those bloggers photo rights to your bottomless supply of barely-to-fully nude women, and then you feature them on your home page.

And like blammo, you've got a web property that men will look at when their wives are around. Which is a big step in many households, I'd bet.