The Daily Beast, Tina Brown's online journalism venture, has decided to sully itself by accepting money from a company in exchange for displaying various sales pitches for said company on its pages. Is nothing sacred?

Tina got a hefty dose of start-up cash from Barry Diller, so TDB hasn't felt much pressure at all to go forth and seek, you know, income. Just over a week ago they were being positively breezy about the whole thing. But now they have secured an "advertiser!" Some fashion thing, Bottega Veneta, is in for one month (of glory):

[TDB's general manager] Ms. Marks said "breakthrough ads" will become a standard part of the site's advertising inventory. She declined to comment on the cost of the ads or how they compare to more standard online ad units. She said only that "this is premium advertising for online."

Only time will tell if this whole "advertising" scheme proves to be more than a fad. [Ad Age]