In 2016, one of the giants of modern journalism fell: Gawker Media, infamous for saying what other outlets wouldn´t say, was sued for publishing Hulk Hogan´s sex tape, lost the case and went bust. After countless other lawsuits it seemed that Gawker had finally run out of luck. But luck had nothing to do with it. Peter Thiel, PayPal founder and billionaire investor, had masterminded the whole thing. Still furious at an article that had outed him 10 years previously, and increasingly disgusted at Gawker´s unscrupulous reporting methods, Thiel had spent nearly a decade meticulously plotting a conspiracy that would lead to the demise of Gawker and its founder, Nick Denton. After a multiyear proxy war through the Florida legal system, the settlement of $140 million in favour of Hogan ended it. The verdict would stun the world, and so would Peter´s ultimate unmasking as the man who had set it all in motion. Why had he done this? How had no one discovered it? What would this mean - for free speech? For privacy? For culture? In Holiday´s masterful telling of this nearly unbelievable conspiracy, informed by exclusive interviews with all the key players, this case transcends the narrative of how one billionaire took down a media empire or the current state of the free press. It´s a study in power, strategy, and one of the most wildly ambitious - and successful - secret plots in recent memory. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Ryan Holiday. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/twuk/001513/bk_twuk_001513_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
In the tradition of Janet Malcolm´s The Journalist and the Murderer and Robert Greene´s The 48 Laws of Power, author Ryan Holiday examines the case that rocked the media world - and the billionaire mastermind behind it In 2007, a short blogpost on Valleywag, the Silicon Valley vertical of Gawker Media, outed PayPal founder and billionaire investor Peter Thiel as gay. Thiel´s sexuality had been known to close friends and family, but he didn´t consider himself a public figure, and believed the information was private. This post would be the casus belli for a meticulously plotted conspiracy that would end nearly a decade later with a $140 million dollar judgment against Gawker, its bankruptcy and with Nick Denton, Gawker´s CEO and founder, out of a job. Only later would the world learn that Gawker´s demise was not incidental - it had been masterminded by Thiel. For years, Thiel had searched endlessly for a solution to what he´d come to call the ´´Gawker Problem´´. When an unmarked envelope delivered an illegally recorded sex tape of Hogan with his best friend´s wife, Gawker had seen the chance for millions of page views and to say the things that others were afraid to say. Thiel saw their publication of the tape as the opportunity he was looking for. He would come to pit Hogan against Gawker in a multi-year proxy war through the Florida legal system, while Gawker remained confidently convinced they would prevail as they had over so many other lawsuit - until it was too late. The verdict would stun the world and so would Peter´s ultimate unmasking as the man who had set it all in motion. Why had he done this? How had no one discovered it? What would this mean - for the First Amendment? For privacy? For culture? In Holiday´s masterful telling of this nearly unbelievable conspiracy, informed by interviews with all the key players, this case transcends the narrative of how one... 1. Language: English. Narrator: Ryan Holiday. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/peng/003381/bk_peng_003381_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.