And my take is basically, I just need people to focus on paragraphs right now. I feel that we’re in this weird era where there’s a small group of people worrying about the big picture, and literally, 9 bazillion people who aren’t waiting for them.


BuzzFeed is sort of the Twitter of now: there was a 5-year period where every example involved Twitter, and now every example involves BuzzFeed. But: BuzzFeed is a great example of what happens when you don’t wait for the model. They didn’t wait for the form, and they didn’t wait for the people who approve everything to show up. They just were like, “All right, screw it, we’re going. We’re going social. Here we go.” I don’t think anybody who works there would deny that there have been a lot of bad paragraphs that have been produced as a result, and a lot of good ones, too. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter. That wasn’t really the deal. The deal was, “We’ve got to go. Let’s go.”


RD: You can be more improvisational in a less corporeal medium. Where it’s not tied to a physical object, when you’re not “delivering an issue” on the calendar of earth.


PF: Yeah.


RD: When you’re not saying, “We need to arbitrarily make sure that all the reporting on this story is done by Friday.” When maybe the story needs you to wait until Wednesday of the next week. So yeah, this kind of format empowers you to shit out a few bad paragraphs and call it an article, but also to really finish something, without leaving a 16-page hole in your issue.


PF: So what BuzzFeed had to do, what everybody has had to do, is invent a new series of constraints. Which is why Wag’s Revue was actually very funny when it first came out, because it was like, “We’re not going to invent any new constraints. We’re going to actually emulate the old constraints.” At some level, it struck me … And this is not really an insult. It was the undergrads figuring out the world, and they're like, we have to make a literary magazine, so the most efficient thing we can do is just go for pictures of pages, in order to nail it, right?