Peter Sterne at Capital New York reports that the popular website Gawker could be undone by none other than former wrestler Hulk Hogan, who is suing the company for $100 million for publishing portions of a 2006 sex tape featuring Hogan having sex with Heather Clem, wife of a shock jock named Bubba the Love Sponge Clem. The case goes to trial in a Florida court on July 6, and things could get existential for Gawker, according to Sterne:
A loss, and an award of even a fraction of the $100 million Hogan’s attorneys are seeking, could empty the company’s coffers, forcing [Gawker Media CEO Nick] Denton to either sell the company outright or to hand much of its equity over to deep-pocketed investors. [Capital New York]
The case, legally speaking, centers on whether the video is of "public concern." But it may simply boil down to whether a jury drawn from Hogan's hometown in Florida will side with Hogan or a distant New York media conglomerate. "There's a very real possibility that Gawker will lose the jury trial," Sterne writes.