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Let’s Look Deeper Into Why, Exactly, ‘I Stand With Gawker’ Is Trending on Twitter

If you open Twitter today, you’ll notice that “I Stand With Gawker” is trending. Here is a sampling of what the tweets look like:

Honestly, this trend could be very confusing for people, especially those who have been following the Hulk Hogan trial.

Plenty of people think they know why it’s trending, too…

…but, actually, it started because of an op-ed in the New York Times. Written by Stephen Marche, the opinion piece is a response to the news that Peter Thiel has been bankrolling Hogan’s litigation against the media company.

You may know Marche best for being the writer who gave the biggest literary flipping off in history to Two and a Half Men.

Now, though, he is back to defend an organization that has never defended him. In fact, by his own admission, Gawker has treated him terribly for years. Still, he believes that what Thiel has done is a direct attack on the freedom of the press. In short, Marche is defending Gawker’s right to say terrible things about his writing and to say terrible things about whatever and whomever they choose.

He explained like this:

Such childish hostility notwithstanding, I believe that Gawker serves an essential function in a celebrity-obsessed culture, and if it were to disappear the world would be poorer and the cause of journalistic truth would be damaged. In its struggle against the billionaire Peter Thiel — who, it turns out, secretly funded Hulk Hogan’s privacy lawsuit against the website, resulting in a $140 million jury award — Gawker deserves more support than it is getting.

The entire piece is very interesting and is worth a read, but at this point, it is almost certain that those participating in the associated Twitter topic did not actually read it.

[image via screengrab]

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