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5 Things

5 Lessons From The Atlantic Economy Summit

Surprisingly, The Atlantic Economy Summit was not as terrible as we thought it would be when we got there. It’s not that we would expect The Atlantic to throw a bad event. Quite the contrary -they sort of invented this whole publication-sponsored event thing. They did a great job in fact. Lots of good signage, lots of coffee, a good program. All that was fine.

It’s just that we have an aversion to wearing pants while we type, and pants were mandatory. Also, we weren’t allowed to bring our Big Gulp inside the Capitol Hilton Ball Room. Sigh.

But those minor inconveniences aside, the whole thing was actually pretty interesting. Rep. Chris Van Hollen was there, as were Jared Bernstein, Grover Norquist, Doug Elmendorf, Alice Rivlin, Judd Gregg, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Sheila Blair, Jason Furman, and Richard Trumka. Wait, the more think about it, who exactly was running the national economy today?

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Which DC Journos Did Forbes Overlook?

We don’t know if you’ve checked out the Forbes‘ 30 Under 30 list -but it seems to us that DC got the shaft. Indeed the whole thing was almost entirely New York and California-centric. But what do you expect when all three judges- Shane Smith, Ben Sherwood, and Arianna Huffington -are based in New York?

Ezra Klein was the only full-time DC media personality that made it. Ugh, how extremely unoriginal. Not saying that Ezra shouldn’t have made it, but come on, there are about one bazillion journalists under 30 in this town. Surely the judges could have found a few more picks amongst them.

Well, that’s why we’re going to pick up where Forbes left off. We here at FishbowlDC are putting together a list of our own highlighting five DC media types that should have been considered for the 30 Under 30 list. And we need your help to do it, dear readers. If you know of some young person who is transforming journalism or entertainment, or innovating the media biz, let us know. Send nominations to, or to our anonymous tip-line, if you prefer. Make sure to include their name, age, affiliation, and any information about why they should be on Forbes‘ list. We’ll post in the coming days with our final selections.

Thanks in advance!


5 Media Trends to Leave Behind in 2014

Helloooo 2014! It’s a new year and a fresh start. Good riddance to 2013,  a year of political in-fighting, economic stagnation, foolish government antics, and annoying media trends. That last item is of particular concern to us here at FishbowlDC. In fact, we’ve pulled together the top 5 media trends that rubbed us the wrong way in 2013 -with the hope that we can leave them behind in the new year.

5.) Super-budge online videos. Everyone from newspapers to pro-wrestlers and politicos has been getting in to the online video racket in an attempt to lure “the kids.” Most have failed miserably. Let’s just hope that they learn their lesson in 2014 -no one is gunna watch your video just because it’s there. Put some effort into it!

4.) The spoken hashtag. -There’s nothing quite so annoying as sidling up to a crowded bar and hearing some fool behind you snark “hashtag where’s the bartender?”, or jogging down the Mall past a group of selfie-snapping friends at the Washington Monument yelling “hashtag BFFs!”, or worst of all, taking a day trip to Rehoboth only to find a bunch of drunks screaming “hashtag spring break forever!” Leave it on Twitter, people.

3.) Politics in our entertainment and vice-versa. Whether we were talking Duck Dynasty, Pajama Boy, or Ashley Judd -2013 was the year that politics and entertainment got too close for comfort. Sure, Hollywood has always been meddling in Washington affairs, and politics long ago became a spectator sport. But with the rise of the reality TV start, the advent of personality-driven news programming, and a non-stop news cycle that’s more than willing to regurgitate the same story over and over again, it has become almost impossible to get away from celebrity-focused political news. It’s enough to make you yearn for the silent-film era.

Check out our top two least favorite trends after the jump…

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Where Y’all Going to Watch the Elections Tonight?


Sure it’s just an off-year election, but it is DC, so there are plenty of bars with TVs to post up at and watch the returns. Here are a few of FishbowlDC’s favorites. Sorry their all in NW (that’s where we live). But you probably do too, dear reader, if we’re being honest. Let us know if you have any dives, saloons, speakeasies, lounges, cocktail bars, gutters, etc… elsewhere in the city that ought to be added to the list.


Nellies’s Sports Bar @ 900 U St. NW: Election coverage is in the Pub Room tonight. If you haven’t been before, be prepared to either oogle/envy the boys on staff. The only gay sports bar in town isn’t picky about their clientele -breeders and homos alike are welcome -but if you get squeamish about tight tees and tighter buns, maybe this isn’t your place. Also Karaoke at 9:00 if things get too dismal to watch on TV (NJ Dems, VA Reps, I’m looking at you). Also if Joe happens to be working, tell him Tutwiler sent you and you just may get a hook-up…at the bar of course!

Lou’s City Bar @ 1400 Irving St. NW: It’s brand spanking new and has a killer Slider Special tonight until 7:00. You can post up at the Big Top or at Bar Two. There’s also a pretty cool covered patio, but that will likely be taken over by the jock crowd. After all, it is The Washington Post Editor‘s “Best NFL & College Football Bar.”

Iron Horse Tap Room @ 507 7th NW: If you’re just getting off work downtown (poor babies), you might wanna head over to the Iron Horse. Just go downstairs and ask them to flip it over to CNN (or MSNBC, or Fox! Jeesh. Or wait, how about PBS?) There’s no sound, but they do have shuffleboard. Pretty good beers too. Though not as good as…

ChurchKey @ 1337 14th St NW: If you can stomach the beard and IPA crowd, this is a fine place to set up for the night and drink away. With 555 beers on draft and in bottles, you won’t be hurting for a variety of ales to sooth you woes and celebrate your victories. This also where the famous Shelton brothers work, so if you see Max or Zack -they’re twins -drop the Tutwiler name and see what it gets you. Don’t’ know why they’re famous? Don’t worry they’ll tell you.

Off The Record at the Hay Adams @ 800 16th st NW: Can’t beat the location! Situated right in front of the White House, OTR is a popular spot with the politco set. So if you like to bloviate and opine your way through election nights, this is you spot. Elections, debates, and other political events can fill the place up, so make sure you show up early (Go now!), and the TV is small, but then again you’ll probably be distracted by the blow-hards and know-it-alls around you.

5 Local Blogs You Should Read

There’s more to DC media than the Cables and the Bezos Post, you just have to look a little harder to find it. Check out these excellent local blogs for a fresh look at This Town.

prettyThe Houndstooth: DC ain’t as ugly as it used to be, y’all. Want proof? Check out the pretty, pretty people on this fashion blog. Especially useful for Hill staffers forced to stare at wrinkled, fat, white men all day.

Prince of Petworth: Ever wonder who, exactly, it was that got shot behind your house last night? Or maybe you’re wondering if someone will finally do something about the long lines at the Columbia Heights Giant? Either way, hit up the undisputed King, err, Prince of hyper-local media in DC. POPville is the place to go to find out what’s happening north of K St and south of Independence.

Monumental Thoughts: written by sports reporter/DC tour guide Rick Snyder, this blog is dedicated to that other most important industry in Washington, tourism. Rick isn’t afraid to wade in to politics though, when it affects his beloved monuments. He had a few choice words for Rep. Randy Neugebauer during the WWII Memorial closure. And don’t even get him started on that crazy lady who threw paint on Lincoln’s feet. Lincoln-White-House

We Love DC: For the bon vivants, the art lovers, and the drunks, DC hasn’t always been an easy place to live. But nowadays the theatres are busy, the art is plentiful (though not always good), and at least some liquor stores are open past 10:00. Plus there’s We Love DC to help you navigate it all. Imagine Brightest Young Things, but with less herpes.

Greater Greater Washington: For the urban planning wonk in all of us. This blog is always brimming with good ideas to make our nation’s capital a better place to live and work. If you obsess over things like “walkability” and the Heights of Buildings Act (nerd!)  this place is for you.

WATCH: Five Things I Didn’t Learn in J-School

Something they don’t always teach in college is that the real learning doesn’t really happen until you’re out of school. But by then it’s called gaining experience. And you get paid for it.

Stephanie Tsoflias, New York market TV reporter and Mediabistro instructor gives her list of the top five things she didn’t learn in journalism school.

If you like what you hear, click on this link to sign up for Tsoflias’ “TV News reporting” class or go to to search for something else you may want to learn.

What’s On Your iPod John Stanton?

We’re starting a new series here in the Fishbowl where we catch up with some of your favorite journos to find out what they listen to. The game is simple. Turn on your iPod, put it on shuffle, and tell us the First 5 songs that play. We’re going on the honor system, so if Taylor Swift song pops up, you HAVE to tell us. Ready to play?

Our first subject is a man whose musical tastes are well-known in D.C: Buzzfeed’s Washington Bureau Chief, John Stanton. Stanton’s twitter avi is the cover of the first album by Bad Brains, so you know we’ll get some interesting stuff from him.

Naturally Stanton delivered. Check out his shuffle. Read more

Dumbass Pitches: ‘Fresh’ 7-Eleven Sandwiches

The mark of a questionable publicist is one who blindly sends out releases without checking to see if the content would remotely appeal to the reporters and websites he or she is pitching. For example, does it matter to FishbowlDC readers that koalas at the San Diego Zoo were tested for Chlamydia? Probably not, but that’s an actual release we received from the zoo’s media relations department.

Likewise, we received followup pitches Wednesday for two new “fresh” premium sandwiches 7-Eleven is offering that include ingredients such as baby spinach and blue cheese crumbles. A release even included a quote from Kelly Buckley, 7-Eleven V.P. of fresh food innovation (yes, this position actually exists and we hope WaPo‘s Gene Weingarten is onto this for his next column.)  “I wanted to check and see if you had any questions regarding 7-Eleven’s new Fresh Sandwiches?” the email said. “Please let me know if there is anything I can do.”

Reaction in the Fishbowl was widespread. “I dunno, I think we need to give our fresh gas station sandwiches coverage a rest,” I wrote my editor, who replied, “I get nauseous just thinking about eating at 7-Eleven.” My colleague, Peter Ogburn, remarked, “I’ll write this right after I finish my piece on ‘Wawa’s Fresh New Pizza Dunkers’, ‘Exxon’s Bold New Beef Jerky Sliders’ and ‘Citgo’s Ultimate Nacho Bangers.’”

The thought of eating anything, “fresh” or otherwise, from a 7-Eleven makes us sweat. We admire perseverance, however, so we sent back five questions about the new sandwiches (the Steakhouse Roast Beef Sandwich and the Bistro Deluxe Sandwich). We wanted to know… Read more

5 Things You Need to Know This Week: Talkin’ Turkey

In this week’s episode of “5 Things You Need to Know This Week,” we talk with a veteran Butterball turkey expert, introduce our very own 5 Things Muppet, discuss Black Friday deals, and think up interesting things to talk about while watching football. Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

For more videos, check out, and be sure to follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV

5 Things You Need to Know This Week: Herman Cain Sings and Matt Lauer Goes Missing

In this week’s episode of “5 Things You Need to Know This Week,” Herman Cain sings about sexual harassment, Justin Bieber has a baby with Kate Middleton (I think I have that right), and nobody seems to know the whereabouts of Matt Lauer. Plus, we debut the 1st annual “Where in the World is ‘Five Things You Need to Know This Week?’”

For more videos, check out, and be sure to follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV