With ad revenue up 35%, Gawker Media returns to pageview bonuses and plans “checkbook journalism”

Gawker Media publisher Nick Denton was predicting a 40% drop in U.S. advertising and paring back accordingly: He laid off 19 writers and, by selling some blogs and consolidating others, shrank his blogging empire from 13 titles to 9. Well, that dire forecast hasn’t quite come to pass — least of all at Gawker Media, where ad revenue in the first half of 2009 was up 35% from the year prior, according to Denton.

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