Foster Kamer beat me to it, but I’m going to say it anyway because it bares repeating: for Nick Denton, Gawker Media is a journalistic enterprise when he wants its activities protected by journalism shield laws, but it’s not a journalistic enterprise when that means it would have to conform to any standard of ethical journalism.
As for whether or not Gawker employees are journalists, the answer is, well, sort of. Regardless of what they’re calling what they do this week, the job itself is still relatively consistent: original reporting of news (loosely defined). That’s what journalists do. That Gawker Media does it with little regard for personal integrity only means that they’re terrible at it.