Gawker Media Changes Policies in Wake of Jezebel’s Scathing Open Letter

JEZEBEL-GAWKER

After “image trolling,” Gawker announces it is disabling all image uploads on comments

Less than 24 hours after Jezebel publicly shamed its parent company for failing to shield employees from, among other things, grotesque rape Gifs, Gawker Media has issued a site-wide fix.

“We’re disabling all image uploads on comments while we figure out a better long term solution for image trolling,” Gawker Media editorial director Joel Johnson tweeted Tuesday morning.

Also read: Jezebel Calls Out Parent Company Gawker Media for Refusing to Handle a ‘Rape Gif Problem’

As TheWrap previously reported, Jezebel employees were at the end of their rope with Gawker Media’s lax comment board moderation, which apparently allowed malicious visitors with “burner accounts” to attach “gory images of bloody injuries emblazoned with the Jezebel logo” to the site’s blog posts without fear of being banned. So they penned an open letter, which was attributed to the entire Jezebel staff, and brought public attention to an issue they felt their bosses were neglecting.

The letter claims the user-end exploit was brought to the attention of the Gawker Media’s “higher ups” months ago, but the company refused to act because it was afraid of driving away potential information sources, many of whom they believe post tips only on the condition of anonymity.

Also read: Gawker Media Group Inc. Dismissed From Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Hateful 8′ Lawsuit

A representative from Gawker Media, which also owns and operates Defamer, IO9, Lifehacker, Gizmodo and ValleyWag, told TheWrap that Tuesday’s decision to suspend the attachment of images is indeed the direct result of the open letter.

Jezebel, launched in 2007, caters to a mainly female audience. Its tagline is “Celebrity, Sex, Fashion for Women. Without Airbrushing.”