Fleshbot.com Sold to Site’s Editor Lux Alptraum

NEW YORK—Gawker Media has completed the sale of its sex blog Fleshbot.com to the site’s current editor-in-chief Lux Alptraum. Gawker announced that the site was up for sale in November and after a two-month deadline to find a buyer passed, Alptraum stepped up to purchase it, she told AVN. 

Alptraum has been writing for the site since August 2007 and has served as editor-in-chief since October 2008. She believes that moving the site out from under the Gawker umbrella will give it the necessary independence to flourish.

“At a very fundamental level, running a mainstream site is dramatically different from running an adult site: there are different legal considerations, different promotional strategies, different ad sales strategies, et cetera,” Alptraum said. “Gawker's a large mainstream media group that's built on a one size fits all model—same layout, same ad strategy, same promotional strategies for all sites. It makes sense for most of their content, but it never made sense for Fleshbot; during my years at Gawker, we were never really able to build Fleshbot up to its full potential because of a lot of the constraints put in place by our layout and ad sales strategy.”

To that end, the site has already altered its layout and brought back some of the ad banners that were lost in Gawker’s 2011 redesign. “We're mostly focused on optimizing our existing product to better package, promote, and monetize it rather than dramatically changing the ethos or attitude of Fleshbot,” said Alptraum.

Fleshbot.com launched November 2003 as Gawker Media’s third online property and is seen as a mainstream sex blog. The site covers both straight and gay content but extends its focus to sexy art, television, movies, literature and celebrity photos.

“As for going forward we're planning on expanding and building out the Fleshbot brand beyond the website,” Alptraum said. “We've already begun the process with our Fleshbot Awards show, which celebrates sexy pop culture and has drawn celebrities like Alan Cumming, Casey Spooner, Chyna and Levi Johnston, and we're looking forward to a full-on media assault.

“I think, at the end of the day, Fleshbot is a site that's able to serve the needs of hardcore porn fans—while also providing a welcoming, nonthreatening space for people who aren't as comfortable with, or may be new to, adult content.”

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.