Gawker founder Nick Denton took down a post by Jordan Sargeant that outed a high-profile executive for allegedly attempting to hire a male prostitute. About allowing the post to go up, Denton wrote: "[I]t is a decision I regret." Shown: Denton speaks during the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) MIXX 2010 conference and expo during Advertising Week in New York City, Sept. 27, 2010. Getty

Gawker Media and its founder, Nick Denton, have long thrived on an "afflict the famous and powerful" ethos, going after easy (and easy-to-dislike) targets like Bill O'Reilly and Donald Trump. But they misread their readers Thursday when a post written by Jordan Sargent was met with outrage -- and possibly rumblings of a lawsuit -- for outing the chief financial officer of a major media company with information from a vengeful, failed blackmailer-porn star-male prostitute he reportedly hired.

The post has been taken down, but the fallout has only begun. Much of the public outrage has zeroed in not on the husband allegedly cheating on his wife with a male prostitute, but on the professional ethics of a sex worker (Hint: They're supposed to be discreet), and on Gawker for ruining an otherwise innocent man's life, and the lives of his wife and kids.

From current Gawker Media employees to your average Joes, Twitter users had a lot to say about the Gawker debacle. Some claimed to out the identity of the porn star-sex worker, whom Gawker allowed to remain anonymous. Others expressed frustration that New York Times columnist David Brooks' strange op-ed addressed to Ta-Nehesi Coates would have fewer mockers because the Gawker scandal stole its thunder. And yet others wondered what legal trouble Gawker and Sargent would get into for allegedly aiding and abetting a blackmailer. And they said it on Twitter.