New York Times Acquires & Integrates The Freakonomics Blog

Posted Aug 8, 2007

In the summer of 2005, I picked up three books to read within a month. They were The World is Flat by Thomas L. Friedman, Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores The Hidden Side Of Everything by Stephen J. Dubner and Steven Levitt, and The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma. That means I read books written by 4 authors that summer. The catch is now 3 out of 4 of those authors are writers for The New York Times after the widely-known newspaper publication acquired The Freakonomics Blog.
Who woulda thunken?

Stephen J. Dubner wrote about the official migration in a blog post called Moving Day yesterday. “After two and a half years of camping out at, after more than 1,300 posts and many thousands of reader comments, this blog is moving,” wrote Dubner. “For the past two years, we have also been writing a regular column for the [Time] Magazine, which is now freely available here. But donĂ¢??t worry about homer-ism; because we are housed in the Opinion section, we can still poke fun at the Times when warranted, and we can still say nice things about blood rivals like the Wall Street Journal.”

Stephen J. Dubner also did somewhat of a book tour and happened to come to Michigan State University (MSU) on November 2, 2005. In Dubner’s discussion, he pretty much reiterated some of the analysis that he wrote in the chapters of Freakonomics. For example, Dubner discussed why druge dealers still live with their moms and how the Ku Klux Klan are like real estate agents.

At the MSU event, Dubner also referenced an analysis of how monkeys would react if they were introduced to currency. The outcome is very human-like and involves prostitution and theft along with intelligent consumerism. That story can also be seen on The New York Times.

Although I do not like throwing around the word ‘synergy’ since I see it as a generic business school term, I really do have to admit that this acquisition is the epitome of synergy. Through the transaction, The New York Times are essentially hiring a couple of really skilled journalists and they’re bringing their sterling franchise with them.

Congrats to Levitt and Dubner. I’ve enjoyed Dubner’s work especially after reading the book and going to his event at MSU.

[1] Freakonomics Blog: Moving Day
[2] Mashable: The New York Times to Acquire Freakanomics Blog, and More