After a 3-year stint, MTV Geek closed its digital doors two weeks ago with naught but a 52-word kitschy salutation. While it came as a shock to us – after all, they have the backing of media giant MTV behind them – perhaps it’s not as surprising when you look at them as merely the latest in specialty blog casualties. Comics Alliance was dropped by AOL earlier this year, and Newsarama shut down it’s blog division for similar reasons – they feel they can cover the same news with their general division.
Others have speculated that perhaps this is the result of MTVG’s generic content, and the ever-burgeoning population of internet news sites that feature blogs, where you can read the same story on a dozen websites a day.
This certainly may be a side effect of the cyber traffic jam of news sites, however it is also worth noting that innovative, easily-digestible sites like Tumblr are quickly making full-blown blog posts seem like plodding behemoths of the internet news world. Graphics and one-to-two-line summaries on a dashboard spread faster, and are often enough for those with a passing interest in the topic.
The news is not all bad. Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to anyone yet, but many of the things that fall under the “geek” umbrella are being rebooted and marketed successfully with incredible mass appeal. Superhero movies have set revenue records and shows like Supernatural (which appealed to a much smaller niche audience when it launched) have garnered millions of fans. So perhaps we should give sites like MTV Geek their due and mourn the business decisions that indubitably lead to their downfall, but we can also appreciate that the things we love are garnering the attention of major news outlets — and indeed, MTV’s Breaking News page as of this morning features articles on The Walking Dead, what it would take for a Harry Potter cast reunion, and Avenger’s wax figurines, a full 30% of the above-the-fold news coverage.