If you build it, they will come. That mantra worked for Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams (because playing catch with the ghost of your dead dad isn’t weird at all) and it appears Eric Gillin, Director of Hearst Digital Media’s Men’s Network, is hoping that it works for Esquire.com as well. In an interview with Joe Pompeo at The Cutline, Gillin was frank about his goals for the site:
Bet on us producing more stories that grab people. We want to become the first thing that you check in on.
Gillin knows a thing or two about web presence. He was the former Editor-in-Chief and co-founder of The Black Table, a witty blog that ended in 2006, which featured early writing from people like Alex Balk of The Awl and New York magazine’s Will Leitch. Now overseeing Esquire.com, Gillin’s first step toward boosting readership was to bring on Foster Kamer, FishbowlNY’s biggest fan.
For Gillin’s and Esquire.com’s sake, we hope the early steps lead to success. We like the website, especially with the revamped layout. But if for some reason it doesn’t work, and after all the building no one comes and everything seems more Waterworld than Field of Dreams, Gillin should know that FishbowlNY would always take Kamer on should he be let go. Kamer would be happy to know that Mediabistro pays slightly more than “bad subway buskers” earn now, though we don’t approve of using “buskers” in our writing, since it’s not 1893 anymore.