I’m under no illusion that the market is a perfect mechanism for sorting out the good from the bad, but it’s a bit galling to find that another crummy mainstream conservative website has just launched in the wake of Culture11’s demise. Adding insult to injury, the New Ledger is helmed by none other than Benjamin Domenech, the same guy who got cashiered by the Washington Post for plagiarism.
On a related note, Andrew Sullivan and Scott Payne put up nice tributes while Josh Trevino and William Beutler offer their own Culture11 post-mortems. To be perfectly honest, a lot of what they say rings true. The name was weird, the social-networking stuff never really took off, and the range of stories and features was ocassionally jarring. But there was a cool, experimental vibe to the site that reflected the editors’ willingness to try anything and everything while offering a platform for an incredibly diverse range of ideological viewpoints. In hindsight, this may not have been the best business model, but it made for a great (if short-lived) forum for free-wheeling political dialogue.