After we just got word from sources familiar with the matter that Gawker’s investigative reporter John Cook will be leaving Gawker.com at the end of April to go work for Yahoo News, it was then confirmed by Gawker publisher Nick Denton — who as The Awl’s Choire Sicha wrote, “wildly undermined” John via Twitter:
Damn! Gawker’s awesome John Cook is about to disappear into the maw of Yahoo. Someone else — WSJ? — should save him. We tried.
Perspective: Yeah, that’s pretty dick! And kind of a kinda-but-not-really subtle “fuck you” to an employee who took his flagship site to new heights over the course of his tenure. Especially since Cook’s such a nice guy. Evidence below!
He starts on April 26th and they’ve been in talks for about a month, now. Yahoo’s recently made waves when word broke that Politico’s Michael Calderone would be joining them as well. Cook would mark the second Gawker alumni that Yahoo’s snagged in addition to former night editor Brett “Cajun Boy” Dykes. Cook will also be joining Chris Lehmann, whose wife (Ana Marie Cox) he once worked with at Mother Jones. Lehman was supposedly instrumental in bringing Cook on board. Cook notes:
I’ve accepted a gig as a senior national reporter/blogger for Yahoo New…As for Gawker, I can say that it was a very very tough choice to leave, and that I’ve had in many ways the perfect job and I’m really genuinely grateful to Nick, Gabriel, and Remy for the opportunities they’ve given me, and will miss working with the extremely talented group of people they’ve assembled.
Lehmann already chimed in on Denton’s take:
Sorry I meant to retreat that Denotn post with the message “Insert Nelson laugh here”
As did he wife, reporter Ana Marie Cox:
RT @m1keh0gan: Is the John Cook thing an April Fool’s joke? // HA! NO! @lehmannchris wins!
And Yahoo’s Brett “Cajun Boy” Dykes, adding onto a kind farewell by Gawker’s Hamilton Nolan:
Gonna try to keep it really maw-y! RT @hamiltonnolan Adios John Cook! Sitting next to Cajun Boy was an incentive few could resist.
Cook was hired last March by former Gawker editor-in-chief Gabriel Snyder; previously, he was at Radar Magazine, and before that, a TV reporter for the Chicago Tribune.
Since his arrival, Cook unveiled some dirty pictures of state department contractors, busted open an off the record White House Press Corps BBQ, unveiled New York political wannabe Harold Ford’s tax shenanigans, wrote scathing roundups of media titans like Rupert Murdoch, among other routinely heralded work. Most recently, he looked into a pattern of SEC employees looking at porn on their work computers, which prompted the New York Times to open up their own investigation as well.
Cook marks the third Gawker departure since February, when editor-in-chief Gabriel Snyder was let go by publisher Nick Denton, and some other guy left for the Village Voice shortly after.