Great piece by Nitasha Tiku at The Observer:

While Condé Nast was far from the only media company to find its established business model upended by the web, it appeared to be more paralyzed than most by the shift, perhaps because, in some ways, the rules of online media ran counter to the entire culture of the company. Where Condé Nast had been built on the notion of exclusivity—the idea that its gatekeepers held the keys to a sort of private club, doling out access to readers one glamorous photo spread or finely-turned phrase at a time—the Internet was messy, democratic and fundamentally untamable.

Condé Nast Is Experiencing Technical Difficulties