It’s Time (For Me) To Say Goodbye

Nov 9th, 2009 // 82 Comments

Hi everyone. Just wanted to let you know that today is my last day as editor of Idolator. The site will continue on, and I will continue to write about music, but we’ve decided to part ways. Despite my nominal status as a “writer,” I am straight-up terrible at goodbyes. So I just have a list of people to thank before I exit stage left.

Thank you to Brian Raftery, Lockhart Steele, and Nick Denton for calling up a music writer from the baseball-house-organ minors. Thank you to Jeff Leeds and the folks at BuzzMedia for putting up with me from 3,000 miles away all these months. Thank you to Jess Harvell for being a terrific foil. Thank you to Christopher R. Weingarten, Lucas Jensen, Dan Gibson, Anthony Miccio, and Mike Barthel for being awesome co-bloggers. Thank you to Maggie Bandur, Andy Beta, Chuck Eddy, Tim Finney, John Gary, Alex Goldberg, Matt Goldenberg, Rohin Guha, Eric Harvey, Rob Kemp, Molly McAleer, Chris Molanphy, Kate Richardson, Dan Rivkin, and Al Shipley — and anyone else who I might have forgotten, please accept my deepest apologies — for pitching in with some of the best music writing I ever had the privilege to edit. Thank you to all the incredible commenters who added to every bit of this site’s essence, to anyone who ever linked to something I wrote, to the people who transformed from e-mail addresses to friends over the past three-plus (!) years, to you reading this right now. I am so lucky to have done this for so long.

If you want to find me, I’ll be around the Internet… try as I might, I can never stay away for too long. You know?


Spice Girls – Goodbye (VideoClip) [Dailymotion]


  1. Oh man. And so goes my favorite music weblog. Seriously, Maura, thank you for everything, it’s been a joy and a pleasure to have a site as good as Idolator for as long as we did.

  2. seriously. i echo dyfl. i can’t believe this. idolator won’t ever be as good.
    maura, love you. for real.

  3. You will be missed, Maura. Best of luck in all of your future projects!

  4. Boo! Best of luck to you Maura!

    [takes Idolator off RSS subscriptions list]

  5. OH NO! Who will mock Vicki with me??

    Best of luck, Maura! Idolator has been my favorite music blog for a long time and it’s all due to you.

  6. Maura, brilliant lady of music: can’t wait to see what you do next. And anytime you want to expand your beat and write about design…

  7. Very, very sad to see you go…thanks for a great run. All the best.

  8. MAURA NOOOOOOOO! It’s official. Today is the WORST.

  9. Oh man, this has completely killed me.

    Your work here has been brilliant and true, Maura. It is hard to see that go.

  10. Awwwww Maura. I could always count on you for both Jarvis and Girls Aloud items… it won’t be the same here without you.

  11. WHAT?!?!?! I… wow. I’m stunned and saddened. Maura, your writing- even about musicians I couldn’t possibly care less about- is nothing short of stellar. I honestly don’t know if I will continue to read Idolator (though I’ll certainly give it a chance), but I do know that wherever you write next, I will read it there.

  12. Man, this blows. Good luck to you in your future endeavors – your commentary on all things music-related will be missed.

  13. From the bottom of my heart, thanks Maura for always being such a truly generous writer. You really spoiled us. It’s been a joy.

  14. I just want to say that Maura has done many, many things for me:

    1) gave me money to write, which still amazes me
    2) trusted me as a 19-year-old college sophomore with guest blogging duties
    3) edited JoBromance
    4) let me bring Jimmy Buffett into the blogosphere on numerous occasions
    5) encouraged nearly (but not all, thank God) all of my low-traffic ideas

    …and the list goes on. She was an amazing boss and will forever be one of my favorite writers. This one’s for you, Maura…

  15. Sad-making. Best of luck in future whatevers!

  16. *nearly all (but not all, thank God) of my low-traffic ideas

  17. Awww, this is really too bad. I love (loved?) Idolator and you were the main reason.

    I guess the only positive for me is that my productivity at work is sure to improve….

    Sad to see you go Maura. On to bigger and better things!

  18. This is horrendous news, truly. I can only wish the best for Maura, even though she’s LEAVING US, because how could I wish for anything else for the person who had the singular consistently tolerable/awesome commentary on all of ridiculous indie bands of the latter part of this wretched decade.

    Also, it made me feel like not the only person who knew about JC Chasez’s solo career and Kathleen Hanna.

  19. This is a total gut-punch. Thanks for all measured and reasoned writing you’ve done here. Your insight and intelligence will be missed.

    And thanks for turning me onto Flop!

  20. God, this is really a sad day. Idolator is may favorite music blog, change is scary, etc. Thank you, Maura for all the terrific work. You’ll be missed :) / :(

  21. Damn! Sad to hear. Thanks for your writing. It’s been a hoot.

  22. One hell of a ride and it was great to see it all from the first day on.

  23. I always look to see “who wrote that entry”, and I smiled every time that it said “Maura”. Good luck to you in your future endeavors, and here’s hoping the other folks here carry the torch as well as you have.

  24. I’ve never commented before, I was always waiting for the right time (you know, actually have something worthwhile to say) but I figured now is a good time.

    Thanks Maura for all the great entries and like everyone’s already said, this is one of the best music blogs (if not the best. And if not that, definitely the smartest hah).

    This comment should prove that for all the comments you’ll get saying thank you, there are so many more who don’t comment but still appreciate.


  25. This made me really sad to read. Much like rockymtranger, I always mentally thought “oh, of course” when I saw your name on an entry that echoed my thoughts exactly on one thing or another. I lurk more than I comment but I wanted to wish you the absolute best of luck in your future endeavours. You’ll be missed.

  26. Shit…this is the end of an era. Sad to see you go…good luck with all future endeavors!

  27. wow. i just left my job today too

    i’ve been pretty absent on this site for a while but it’s sad to see you go maura, i always enjoyed your posts

  28. I can only repeat what others have said. Your writing has made Idolator one of “those” I visited on an hourly basis (yeah, I’m sad/bored) and even if — sometimes especially when – I disagreed with what you said I always admired and appreciated the skill with which you said it.

    Or, in other words, Bye byes.

  29. ben

    sigh. Wishing you all the best &c., Maura, but I’m not going to lie… this is kind of sending me into le malaise.

  30. Idolator was the reason I started blogging in the first place. I don’t know what to say here, other than best of luck Maura, and thank you. I could only hope to be as witty, relevant and insightful as your words have been.


  31. I am so sad. Who will post the exact same things I think about American Idol? Where will I read about Charlotte Hatherly and other musicians largely ignored by blogs?
    We will miss you and best of luck in all you do!

  32. Dammit. And good luck.

    And I really should wait until tomorrow for this, but:

  33. Oh man. Maura, you will be missed around here! I was uneasy when Brian left, but you made it easy to fall in love with Idolator all over again, and now, well, who knows! I hope you have huge, wonderful things in store for your near future!!!

  34. As long as we’re posting exit music:


  35. I’ll miss your Gokey bashing and all the weirdly similar underdog bands we both like. Thanks for making the dismal music business seem interesting again.

  36. All this means is that you will go on to front the highest-selling death metal band in history, or the equivalent:

  37. Dear Ms. Johnston,

    Like Mr. Raftery before you, you always treated me nice despite me just being some random dude on the internet. I’ve enjoyed following the site since you took over for him and was really glad to see you stay on when Buzznet took over.

    I liked watching the round table videos you did on music blogging a while back and hope you don’t stray too far because you’ve got more sense for what’s going on around these parts than I could ever dream for.

    I think the time that best defines your stay with the site is when you were left to be the lone writer on the site a while back. I think you stepped things up and things around here really kicked ass. They still do, and I hope you continue that trend wherever you land.

    Thanks & good luck,

  38. In 2007, Idolator founding editor Brian Raftery was the first person to invite me to guest-edit and submit features like “Canon Fodder.”

    But it was Maura, later that year, who invited me to launch “100 & Single,” probably the geekiest chart dissection ever written. I wouldn’t have even ventured anything so deep and obsessive if she hadn’t emboldened me to try it.

    The last two years have been, full stop, the most rewarding period of music writing I’ve ever done, and I have Maura to thank for all of it. She is a great editor, a sharp commentator and, I am proud to say, a dear friend. The Internet is a sadder place for music fans today.

    Godspeed, Maura — we’ll follow your musings wherever you care to share them.

  39. nooooo!
    but it will never be the same!!

  40. This upsets me, surprises me, and has left me stretching to try to fill this space with anything more meaningful than a thank you. With you at the helm this blog felt a lot more like a community in the comments section than other blogs (especially with the rate you and other authors post in the comments). Despite the blog’s downsizing to pretty much just you with some guests, you kept it solid. Best of luck, Maura!

  41. This blog, shortly after I discovered it, introduced me to Camera Obscura, which grew to become my absolute favorite currently-active band (aka more or less quite literally changing my life for the better).

    For that (and also for the resulting few years of intelligent entertainment [and, well, thought]), I thank you.

    Also, I’m totally following you on tumblr anyway like a proper creep, so yeah. :)

  42. You truly will be missed.

  43. Maura, you have truly commandeered one of the great music websites of the past few years. I’m going to miss it, but I know you’ll be back soon with another worthwhile project. All good wishes from out here in the Midwest.

  44. I find it hard to believe the site will go on without you, Maura…It’s really one of the only music blogs I can tolerate, let alone embrace and love as I have under your editorial guidance. So naturally, I’ll keep following you as you go elsewhere. Good luck!!!

  45. I will miss anyone who posts videos of Johnny Gill performing Rub U The Right Way on Arsenio Hall. Go on with your New Jack self. Hmmmmmm not sure how I feel about this, I hate change and I rarely find music blogs/sites I enjoy, in fact this is the only one, I know it will change, here is hoping you find something soon, I never follow twitter, but I will check in on yours to see where I can find your next writing gig.
    Or feel free to email me when and where you start writing.


  46. Sad to see you move on, Maura, both as a reader and as an occasional contributor I’m a huge fan of what you’ve done here over the years. Good luck!

  47. WHAT! Ugh, we’ll miss you… please tell me you’re writing the rest of F2K, at least!

  48. Just, boo. Eff this year in the ear. This was my first favorite music blog and you were my first favorite music blogger. I look forward to seeing what you do next and wish you all the best.

  49. I’m sorry but I need someone other than myself to snark on Mariah and her wacko lambs as well as shower Amerie with her proper dues. *sniffle* You’ll be missed here.

  50. sad! thanks for being so great at what you do, maura. i will continue to follow you, wherever you end up heading.

    while i never really shared your love for acts like kelly clarkson, it was the consistency of your writing and devotion to the topic that always brought me back. your pieces were always refreshing for their opinions, and they were always on-point.

    thank you.

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