Note: Big update on this over here.
I like this deal. John Sides:
We are very pleased to announce that The Monkey Cage is going to become part of the Washington Post. After 5+ years of writing and growing as an independent blog, we think that the Post offers a tremendous opportunity both to increase and broaden our audience and to improve our content. We think that it will be a great place to continue the blog’s mission of publicizing political science research and providing informed commentary on politics and current events.
The Monkey Cage is a group blog of political scientists; I think of it as being similar in style to the economist bloggers whose profile have risen over the past five years or so — connecting academic work to events of the day, in a tone that mixes journalism, expertise, and the academy. It’s a good match for The Washington Post, I think. The paper famously rejected the idea that would become Politico when it came from within its own staff; here, it’s latching on to a higher-brow outlet that was born on the outside.
There are a few questions I’d love to see answered. Most of The Monkey Cage’s contributions come from working academics; contributing to a for-profit entity might be different than for a group blog. I’m unaware of The Monkey Cage ever running ads or otherwise generating revenue; I’ll be curious how Post money is being divvied up here. The site’s voice is some distance from the Post’s general news voice, but I think Wonkblog has already shown the way there. And it’ll be interesting to see whether the posting pace increases; the site usually publishes around 90 posts a month. But even without knowing the details, though, I think this will be a deal people are happy with — it’ll be good to get their work in front of a larger audience.