WM is sold, Giantbomb and ComicVine splitting off.

Topic started by Turambar on March 15, 2012. Last post by UsachanMaN 2 years, 6 months ago.
Post by Turambar (233 posts) See mini bio Level 10
http://allthingsd.com/20120315/exclusive-bermanbraun-buys-most-of-shelby-bonnies-whiskey-media/
 

In a deal that was just signed, longtime Silicon Valley exec Shelby Bonnie has sold his social publishing start-up, Whiskey Media, to Santa Monica-based entertainment and interactive production company BermanBraun.

As part of the deal, BermanBraun will get three key sites of San Francisco-based Whiskey, including video entertainment-focused Screened, tech-testing site Tested and Anime Vice, which covers anime and manga comics. It will also acquire Whiskey’s content publishing platform.

Two other sites owned by Whiskey — games-oriented Giant Bomb and comic book database Comic Vine — will be sold to another media company, which is rumored to be CBS Interactive.

Heaped on top of the niche content, aimed at passionate fans, Whiskey mixes in a lot of social networking, as well as user-generated content, along with its professional fare.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

But the major reason for the acquisition is that BermanBraun — which also makes popular sites for large portals such as Microsoft’s MSN (the Wonderwall celebrity site and Glo, aimed at the women’s lifestyle arena) and AOL (upcoming sites on weather, men and pets) — needs to be able to scale its online content production. The Whiskey platform should be able to allow it to more easily grown and create new sites more quickly, as well as mine data across them.

“With the addition of Whiskey’s first rate team and powerful, state of the art publishing, data and social tools platform, we will be able to further enhance our user experience and engagement, and provide our advertising partners with unparalleled data insights,” said Lloyd Braun and Gail Berman, who run BermanBraun, in a statement. “One of the other great parts of this acquisition is that we will have Shelby Bonnie in our lives. We have enormous respect for Shelby personally and professionally, and his insights, relationships and acumen will be invaluable to us.”

Bonnie, who was once CEO of CNET, which he helped found, added: “I have had the pleasure of knowing both Lloyd and Gail for years and they are two incredibly high integrity people who bring passion and creativity to the interactive space. As we see a dramatic changes in the whole media landscape, success will demand new skills and talents. BermanBraun’s content skills and vision joined with the Whiskey platform will create a combination that I believe is without equal. I couldn’t be more excited for the combination.”

Post by Addfwyn (408 posts) See mini bio Level 16

I'm generally okay with this, I never possessed an immense enmity towards Gamespot that fuels a lot of the Giant Bomb community. I won't star preaching about the sky falling until well, it falls. The biggest loss will be some of the cool cross-site stuff they did before, which always ignored Anime Vice anyway.

Am curious what this will mean for anime vice. More staffers assigned to it wouldn't hurt for sure, and I'd love to see it get a bit more attention.

Post by nivi (6 posts) See mini bio Level 8

I'm confident that Giant Bomb and Comic Vine are in good hands. I am confident that Tested can hold their own, and that Screened will benefit from (additional) staff.

Anime Vice? Anime Vice, I am concerned about.

Post by Turambar (233 posts) See mini bio Level 10
@Addfwyn: @nivi: This is all assumptions and bear no actual plausibility, but yes, AV's fate is probably the most interesting out of the other 5.
 
Things can either turn real good, or turn real bad.  That fact that the content publishing platform was also purchased means that I don't think there will be any major site structural changes.  But AV is the weakest of all the WM sites, so it will either get shut down due to a lack of traffic overall, or maybe it'll see an increase in funding, leading to an actual staff once again.
Post by Count_Zero (344 posts) See mini bio Level 20

I kind of hope that this leads to Anime Vice getting additional staff. Tom, Sora, ZombiePie, and everyone else have been doing an amazing job providing great content for the site (something that I'm kind of proud to have been a small part of, with my articles on Anime licensed tabletop RPGs, and my brief rundown of the Manga Video Holy Trinity Of Suck). I hope that some of the volunteer contributors, like ZombiePie & Sora might get brought on full time and get paid for their work! Additionally, I hope that, if we get more staff, we might be able to get more original content and news coverage, instead of being, well, a show recap site (which is not a bad thing, but it could be better).

What I am wondering is, how this will effect some of the cross site stuff. Tom got started on Comic Vine before he branched out to Screened and to Anime Vice. Would he end up going with Comic Vine, or would he stay with Screened and Anime Vice at BermanBraun? What effect will BermanBraun have on the content of the sites? I know that they were paying close attention to this at Giant Bomb (and likely Tested), but I'm not so sure how much they were looking at for Anime Vice.

Also, I'm kind of wondering about infrastructure updates. From a sheer feature-set standpoint, Anime Vice is behind the closest Whiskey Powered site, Screened, in terms of what you can do with the Wiki. For example, on Screened you can do a mass edit for a series to add recurring cast members and characters all at one whack, which you can't do here. Also, Anime Vice doesn't have the option to add story arcs to manga volumes, while at ComicVine, you can add story-lines to comic issues. Will this cause the Whiskey Powered platform to fork even further, or will this mean that we'll finally be able to get everything relatively current on the feature-set and back-end side of things for all the various sites?

Inquiring minds want to know!

Post by Wraith (168 posts) See mini bio Level 17

So this is how the world ends.....

In a more serious note, will this mean anime vice will get staff?

Post by Turambar (233 posts) See mini bio Level 10
@Count_Zero: Is Tom an official WM employee or is he a freelance contributor?  I always assumed it was the latter.
Post by JJOR64 (2,074 posts) See mini bio Level 16

I'm curious about the fate of Anime Vice as well.

Post by AlKusanagi (9 posts) See mini bio Level 6

Maybe they could use this to grow into a more all encompassing Japanese pop culture site. They do the occasional movie review, but there's a world of Japanese TV shows out there, not to mention the huge idol trend.

Post by Count_Zero (344 posts) See mini bio Level 20

@Turambar: I figured he was too. However, he was freelancing for three different sites. I was kind of wondering whether, as part of this, one - would he still be freelancing with BermanBraun to do stuff like Watch & Learn for AV and Welcome To Weird for Screened, or if they weren't keeping him on or, well, what?

Post by nivi (6 posts) See mini bio Level 8
“With the addition of Whiskey’s first rate team and powerful, state of the art publishing, data and social tools platform, we will be able to further enhance our user experience and engagement, and provide our advertising partners with unparalleled data insights,”

http://allthingsd.com/20120315/exclusive-bermanbraun-buys-most-of-shelby-bonnies-whiskey-media/

Those last eight words, guys. Those last eight words.

It's how BUSINESSMEN talk, I get it, but it's scary.

Post by DocHaus (933 posts) See mini bio Level 18
Post by rubberluffy (592 posts) See mini bio Level 16

I don't think AnimeVice could get any worse, this place is already kinda the punching bag of Whiskey Media. Maybe we'll get consistent content outside of Tom's good stuff and the weekly chapter reviews.

Post by Turambar (233 posts) See mini bio Level 10
@rubberluffy: It no longer existing would be worse.
Post by Addfwyn (408 posts) See mini bio Level 16

@AlKusanagi: I'd be up to see that, would probably get me more active here if it encompassed things like japanese music and drama as well (Though I admit hallyu has hit me as hard as any other, despite living in Japan)

I'm still hoping to see AV getting reinvigorated. Don't get me wrong, the community has done some great things here, it's one of the more positive (albeit smallest) of the Whiskey communities, I really enjoy it here. Tom has done well, but I do miss some of the video features we had under Gia and John. Having a couple people being the face of the site, like the other whiskey sites, combined with the unparalleled community would really do well for it. I just hope that this is a chance to do that, and not just let it slowly fade away into oblivion.

Post by CrazyCanuck (169 posts) See mini bio Level 15

@DocHaus: how very cryptic, tell us how you really feel. :D

Post by takashichea (12,444 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Online Now
Moderator

Ethan told us that this site is community driven. My teammates, the mods, Sotyfan16 and his friends, the remaining staff, and I have been Gung Ho on getting the community active with blogs and wiki stuff.

More staff or any help would be great. I don't think Anime Vice is at its lowest. It's just that people from the outside don't like the huge presence of RPG and battle fans or think that the forum activity is dead. The wiki presence is awesome here. My teammates and I have been encouraging teamwork throughout the year and helping new wiki editors.

I don't think dividing the Whiskey Media Sites is a good idea.

Edit:

@Count_Zero said:

I kind of hope that this leads to Anime Vice getting additional staff. Tom, Sora, ZombiePie, and everyone else have been doing an amazing job providing great content for the site (something that I'm kind of proud to have been a small part of, with my articles on Anime licensed tabletop RPGs, and my brief rundown of the Manga Video Holy Trinity Of Suck). I hope that some of the volunteer contributors, like ZombiePie & Sora might get brought on full time and get paid for their work! Additionally, I hope that, if we get more staff, we might be able to get more original content and news coverage, instead of being, well, a show recap site (which is not a bad thing, but it could be better).

You should add that Sotyfan16 and FoxxFireArt to that. Though, I recall Sotyfan16 telling me that they only hired people in San Francisco. (If I remember correctly).

As for news, it's challenging for the mods and everyone else to post articles right away. The mods don't have the luxury to post it. They have to send a PM to the staff like Perry Vandell who has been doing an excellent job.

Post by Count_Zero (344 posts) See mini bio Level 20

I think we need something, in keeping of the spirit of this thread, that is slightly more cheerful. Like, say, this.

But seriously folks, Dave is answering questions about the split in the Giant Bomb chat right now. Now would be a really good time for a bunch of us to come in and basically let Dave know that we're really worried about the future of Anime Vice, and to voice our specific concerns. That, and he's also taking questions on his twitter account, @enemykite.

Post by MrXD (643 posts) See mini bio Level 15

My mind is going crazy right now...

Post by PenguinDust (1,008 posts) See mini bio Level 13

@AlKusanagi said:

Maybe they could use this to grow into a more all encompassing Japanese pop culture site. They do the occasional movie review, but there's a world of Japanese TV shows out there, not to mention the huge idol trend.

You mean like Japanator? I don't know. I'd be further worried about the format of the website. Hell, I am right now. I think things will change around here but I'm not sure in ways that will be comfortable. Outside of Giant Bomb, I visit AV and Screened the most. Now that Whiskey has been divvied up, I have concerns about the fate of two of my favorite websites.

I don't mean to be flippant or alarmist, but can anyone recommend a few other good anime websites with civil forums?

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