NBCUniversal will be making the archived content of two high-profile sites that it is closing down — Television Without Pity and DailyCandy — available to the public, the media giant confirmed.
Fans of the sites had complained loudly on Twitter and elsewhere, after Re/code reported last week that the material published over the long history — well, long in terms of the Internet, at least — of the two sites would be preserved but not accessible for public consumption.
Now, all the past material on the sites — such as popular recaps of TV shows – will continue to live at TelevisionWithoutPity.com and DailyCandy.com. But, as before, the popular and influential user forums on TWoP will only be available until May 31.
Local recommendations site DailyCandy, aimed at women, had been purchased by the Comcast media unit in 2008 for $125 million. The sassy TWoP TV review and recap site — its motto is “Spare the snark, spoil the networks” — was purchased by NBCU’s Bravo cable unit in 2007. Both were founded in the Web 1.0 era.
The closing impacts 64 employees at the women-focused DailyCandy and three at TWoP, all largely located in New York.
Why the shuttering? As I noted before, despite creating laudable sites, there was still not enough traffic and, therefore, a difficulty monetizing the properties, especially in the wake of increased competition since the pair were first founded. Both sites were also slow to social media, and suffered in comparison to more nimble new rivals.
Still unanswered is why NBCU did not sell the properties. While there was internal discussion at the media giant on whether and how to sell the properties, the effort apparently came to naught.
That said, sources at the company said it had been contacted by many parties interested in buying the properties, either whole or in part, since the news of their closings. That’s true, since I have received a number of inquiries from well-known content players about whether the sites could be acquired. (But since my name is not Steve Burke, I declined to comment.)
(Full disclosure: NBCU is an investor in Revere Digital, which publishes Re/code.)