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Posts Tagged ‘Amanda Hess’

Best. Disclosure. Ever.

tweetwarPoynter’s Andrew Beaujon profiles for TNR former FishbowlDC editor Betsy Rothstein, who recently announced her move to the Daily Caller. If you read nothing else, the disclosure is priceless. Only in DC, folks….And cue the Twitter war!

I have had a need to try to make sense of Betsy Rothstein’s work since early 2010. If you’re thinking, “Why is this a story?” or “This is some pathetic inside-the-Beltway nonsense,” I agree with you. She and I used to fight on Twitter (I have a note above my desk now reminding me not to engage, and I’m sure she considers me an unworthy opponent and a complete bozo). We have never met in person and have talked on the phone only a few times, none of which were pleasant. I’ve written about her before, she’s written about me before, and there’s a decent chance I’m projecting some of my own feelings about her work on my fellow Washington-area journalists and pretending others share them. I have worked with both Mike Riggs and Amanda Hess. New Republic story editor Ryan Kearney and I once worked together at TBD.com, a frequent Rothstein target, and we infuriated Rothstein by sending a gift to her home address as part of a feature on inexpensive gifts for prominent Washingtonians. When I emailed her last week after asking what she’d do after FishbowlDC, she replied by tweeting a photo of a man displaying his middle finger. The editor of this story and I have both worked at Washington City Paper, but never at the same time. He edited Moe Tkacik’s story and has eaten lunch with Mark Leibovich

Beaujon’s full piece here.

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Want to Hug Amanda Hess? Think Again.

journohatemail

When you mess with freelancer Amanda Hess, formerly of TBD fame, this is what you might get. Her website is: sexwithamandahess.com. She often writes about sex and gender.

UnknownThis is how the mess began. Hess wrote, “Hugs are awkward, falsely intimate power plays. Stop imposing them on everyone you meet.” She linked to this story that she wrote for Slate on the matter of hugs as power plays.

As one might imagine, this caused a number of followers to either virtually hug her or insult her, calling her a “socially awkward” woman. Famous last words: “Alex, if people start hugging me over this I am going to be very upset with you.” (Alex is Bloomberg BNA‘s Alex Parker, who pointed out that Hess needs a hug and that handshakes are “prolly” less hygienic than hugs.)

See what happened next… Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“The networks are all driving me crazy to do television shows—“a ratings machine”—but because of Apprentice have been loyal to NBC.” — Former never had a shot in hell presidential hopeful Donald Trump.

Journo meets her twin: Rachel Maddow (And no, we’re not referring to MSNBC’s Chris Hayes)

“Never met Maddow until now. We kind of look alike. My intro: ‘Are you my long lost sister?’ Her: ‘Glad we both got the memo.’ Maddow, heading into West Wing, said she was here for a ‘hippie cabal.’ Asked if I was coming. NO, DAMN IT, I WASN’T INVITED.” — HuffPost‘s Jennifer Bendery.

Capitol Police come to the rescue of a cell phone

“Phone just fell and slid into a member’s personal storage closet. Big thanks to the five Capitol Police who came to rescue it.” — Lauren French, Politico Pro tax reporter.

Dan Froomkin tweets like a 12-year-old

“If u cn give info 2 the press w/no intent of it going 2 enemy & b found guilty of aiding the enemy… that’s scary.”  — HuffPost‘s Dan Froomkin, who has been taking tweeting lessons from Politico‘s Jonathan Martin. Read this 5 times. He links 2 this.

Important Q’s to Ponder: “Didn’t Anna Wintour and Rod Blagojevich get there [sic] hair from same play doh factory?” — Breitbart.com‘s Dana Loesch. And this: What are anna wintour’s qualifications to be uk ambassador other than her accent? (which is very good.)” — ABC News reporter Matt Negrin.

Tapper on Beck’s show to discuss — are you crazy, what else? — The OutPost

“Here I am on @glennbeck’s show today talking about The Outpost.” — ABC News Senior White House Correspondent Jake Tapper. His next appearance: Sesame Street, followed by Snapped.  bit.ly/TMEVDE

Smart ass!

“How about ‘up?’ That’s a direction.” — HuffPost‘s Jeff Young in a moment of dripping sarcasm. He was reacting to this from NBC News: “NASA needs stronger direction to lead in space, report finds.”

Cliffhanger: Journo weighs reconciliation with ex

“After a year apart the ex wants to reconcile. He has definitely changed. #sohaveI #surprisingdecision” — MetroWeekly‘s Randy Shulman. He continued, “Sometimes the only correct answer is no. #doingsomethingformyselfforonce.” And finally: “Have agreed to have dinner and hear him out at least.” Hey Randy, let us know what happens! Now we’re invested.

Senator questions armored cars at pumpkin festivals

“Spending must be cut for #fiscalcliff when gov pays for armored vehicles to guard rural pumpkin festivals. All in my DHS report out tmrw.” — Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.).

Hess on fence on nipple-related act

“Is projectile ejaculating frosting from your nipples a feminist act? Katy Perry says no but I’m still on the fence.” — Slate blogger Amanda Hess. She links to this story that she wrote headlined: “Enough with the feminism police.”

Find out what’s making Steve Buttry all nostalgic… Read more

The FishbowlDC Interview With Vintage Fashion Blogger and Olympic Sangria Drinker Lisa Rowan

Say hello to Lisa Rowan, a fashion blogger for Goodwill of Greater Washington and an online communications consultant. She contributes to the Goodwill’s fashion blog and represents the organization at events and workshops. She also writes about vintage and consignment clothing for Quarterlife202.com. Rowan formerly worked as a Community Host for TBD, but as Robert Allbritton‘s Titanic began to sink, she was laid off in March. She earned a B.A. in history from the University of Maryland and is expected to earn an M.A. in Arts and Liberal Studies from Georgetown in December, 2013. Rowan was kind enough to photograph her favorite item of clothing. She wrote in late one night to say, “I’m back and full of sangria! 1. Dress photo attached. I didn’t even Instagram it, but I did do my best to make the sparkles stand out. It’s tough when all your walls are yellow or ivory. Maybe you can run it through Blingee? 2. Resume attached for your reference. It’s pretty boring. 3. [Re: TBD] I got laid off when everyone else did. I left in mid-March, about halfway through the marathon of last-day ‘happy’ hours. (We called them ‘sad hours.’)” Follow Rowan’s unique, self-deprecating wit on Twitter at @Lisatella. As for her photograph, she says: “Please note that I don’t actually have jaundice and that one of my weak points is naming image files.”

If you were a carbonated beverage, which would you be? Champagne.

How often do you Google yourself? With Google Alerts, self-Googling comes to you!

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor/boss (or vice versa)? “My dad gave me the same advice.”

Who is your favorite working journalist and why? Elizabeth Holmes, style reporter at the Wall Street Journal. She can embrace the fun side of her beat, but has her thumb on related economic issues, too.

Do you have a favorite word? I like a lot of words. Playing favorites would be unfair.

Who would you rather have dinner with – CNN’s Anderson Cooper or ABC’s Katie Couric or Dr. Phil. Tell us why. Anderson Cooper would be the sassiest. And he sounds like a picky eater, which would make me look like a culinary adventurer in comparison.

The Earth’s human population is dying out and you must save it. You will spend a romantic evening with either Gabby Sidibe (“Precious” etc..) or Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas). Who will it be? (Neither is not an option.) Gabby Sidibe. Hollywood!

What swear word do you use most often? Fucking.

You’ve just been told the big news: You get to have your own Sunday morning talk show. Who will be on your roundtable? (Pick four journalists or pundits types.) Ann Curry, Brian Williams, Amanda Hess, The Rev. Al Sharpton. I think Amanda and Al would get along great.

On a serious note for a moment, if you could have dinner with a person who has died, who would it be? Peter Jennings.

Who is your favorite Boybander and why? (Ezzy, Hazy, Weigel, Attackerman, Beutler) Are these not those boys from One Direction?

When you pig out what do you eat? Cookies. So many cookies.

What is your absolute favorite item of clothing in your closet? We want the fabric, the brand, the store and the price if possible. If it’s a certain kind of underwear we don’t want to know about it. On one of my last vintage buying trips to an undisclosed location, I found a slinky evening dress by Palm Beach designer Ann Herwig that’s from some time in the early 1960s. It’s got a scoop neck, an open back, and ivory sequins from shoulder to toe. I bought it for $60, had the zipper repaired, and kept it for myself. God only knows when it will ever make it out of the closet.

Pick one: Mad Men, Scandal or True Blood. Mad Men.

Have you ever had a tarot card reading? No.

Have you ever had a near-death experience? I have felt like death on a number of occasions, but have never actually approached it.

Ever been arrested? No.

Read more

Diary of ‘Skanky’ News Ethics

Over the past four days, a story I wrote about female scribes and what I deemed their “provocative” and “sexpot” Twitter avatars has made the rounds in different publications on the web. I published the story Thursday and, much to my surprise, it went viral in a way I had not experienced before. It took on a hateful life of its own and not one entirely based in reality.

The headline that made the feminists and others go wild: “Female Campaign Reporters Go for Sexpot Look.” After it published, I was called a number of colorful terms: Slut, Skank, “loose in the bedroom.” Contrary to those strangers who labeled me slutty, I was also told I needed to “get laid.” And then I was told to “watch my ass.” NYT‘s media guru David Carr remarked on Twitter, “Apparently, @fishbowlDC has lost every marble she ever had and started a dreamy wonk throwdown.” I only wish I could seek psychotherapy from Carr — and borrow some of his marbles. But this is par for the course these days in the world of online journalism. I do not think my story was earth shattering, nor did it break any actual news. But it introduced a subject matter that hit an unexpected nerve.

As the name-calling hit a fever pitch Thursday afternoon, the only journalist who sought an actual quote from me was Matt Wells of The Guardian. The outlet published a story the following day. Later, others sought me out — an old boss in California who I’d worked with in Florida wrote, “Shades of Boca. Go get ‘em!” And friends who worried about all the nastiness they were reading on Twitter reached out to say hello. One, a female reporter friend in New York, texted to say, “Sheesh, people get way way too worked up about these things. They all need to relax. By tomorrow people will have a whole other thing to fixate on. Sending good thoughts your way – can’t be easy dealing with how toxic people are.” Meanwhile, a reporter friend in Kiev, wrote in to say, “Now in Kiev, where they desperately need a Fishbowl. Lots of sex, lies, videotape, etc.” A longtime source Jason Roe, a GOP campaign consultant now based in San Diego, wrote an email with the subject line: “I don’t hate you.” I laughed. I’m no victim here, but it’s hard not to feel touched by those who check in during the storm. He also wrote, “It does go to show how thin-skinned DC people are. There is never a single day that I miss being there. And now, I’m going to have an afternoon beer at a beachside dive bar.”

On Friday, 78,989 page views later, the hate continued. Feminists called me a “horrible writer” and a “horrible person.” They said I had “viciously attacked” women for simply having photos. They LOLed their way through the day by personally insulting me. BuzzFeed Editor Ben Smith threw himself to the wolves (we’re not close but have always had a respectful rapport) by writing on Twitter, “In sincere defense of @FishbowlDC: It’s nice to have a DC journo or two who doesn’t care what her peers think of her.” The public stoning participants went wild. “Oh fuck you dude,” one wrote to Smith. A feminist wrote simply, “Huh?” and proceeded to shriek at Smith for being wrong.

One reporter who continues  to be enthralled by the story is Hunter Walker, a political reporter for The New York Observer, who published a 2000-word piece on the matter on Friday night and another update yesterday. I’ve never met him, but Hunter previously worked at Gawker as well as mediabistro’s FishbowlNY. From the start, he took a leading role in the procession of predominately New York-based reporters and feminists who somehow felt violated by my piece. On Friday he wrote that the Internet felt naked without an apology from me. But it was Hunter who actually depicted himself as naked. He began a series of tweets criticizing my story and even corralled a group of male reporters who began calling themselves “PressDudesGoneWild.” Hunter changed his Twitter avatar, he told me, by searching for “sexy 80s men” and photoshopped his face onto Tom Selleck‘s body. Catchy, I thought. And funny.

Until Hunter’s journalistic tactics became not quite so funny.

Read more

TBD’s Hess & Smurfette Dress to GOOD

Although she looks like the love child of  Opie Taylor and Smurfette Smurf in this photo, TBD’s Amanda Hess has become one of FishbowlDC’s favorite characters.  Her reporting on gender and sex has always made for fun fodder and we liked that time she angrily asked Betsy over Twitter: “Do you have boobs and what part do they play in your reporting?”  So you can imagine our dismay when we found out that our little smurfberry is leaving Mayberry for a gig at GOOD in California.

In response to the news, Betsy offered a special bon voyage present – the long-awaited answer to Hess’s Twitter Q:

“Yes, I have boobs but I don’t think they play a huge, mountainous role in my reporting -  though I will keep you abreast of any changes,” Betsy explained.  “Amanda, I wish you and your chest the best of luck in Orange County.  Let me know if you need help packing your fun bags for the long journey,”  she said.

Good luck, Amanda…give our best to Aunt Bee and watch out for Gargamel!  Ah, we have fun.  In all seriousness, congrats on the gig!

 

TBD‘s Hess Has a Question About Charlie Sheen

Actor-turned-trainwreck Charlie Sheen is going on tour. And he’s stopping in D.C. at DAR Constitution Hall on April 19. TBD‘s Amanda Hess isn’t pleased. After all, she is a “sex and gender” writer and clearly Charlie Sheen is no friend to women. She wants to know why DAR would even book Sheen for an appearance. (Aside from the whole “making money” thing, apparently.)

Hess reports that DAR rents itself publicly, and is obligated by law to book any show where there would be no damage to the building and no potential injury to members of the audience. “His behavior does not come under that kind of heading,” DAR’s manager Paul Guilderson told TBD. “We don’t expect that there’s anything he could do that would cause a problem to the building or the patrons.”

If you’d like to see Sheen, tickets are still available starting at $60 for tier seating. Meanwhile, you can meet the man, the myth, the legend, the warlock for the totally reasonable price of $575.

Question for TBD’s Hess: Can We Pinch You?

Amanda Hess, TBD.com‘s supposed sex and gender reporter, wrote yesterday about the six “weirdest gender moments” at the Academy Awards telecast on Sunday.

The only thing weird about those moments, though, was that they were even chosen. Among them: Natalie Portman thanking her fiancee for giving her “the most important role of her life,” as a mother. Hess finds it “a little icky” that Portman used her speech “to reinforce the primacy of a woman’s gender role.” We’re missing the weird part of Portman being happy about becoming a mother.

Also weird in the World of Hess: Kirk Douglas pinching Melissa Leo‘s arm. (She asked him to pinch her when she rose to accept her award to be cute and make sure the moment was real.) That one wasn’t weird either, nor was it clear why it’s classified as a “gender moment.” (Questions to ponder: Does TBD not allow pinching in its newsroom? Does Hess have newsrooms tantrums if anyone tries to pinch her or ask her pinching questions?)

King’s Speech director Tom Hooper was also a target for thanking lead actors Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush. Hess thought the speech was devoted “exclusively to your boy’s club,” though Hooper also went on to thank his mother (that woman who at some point pushed him, like a bowling ball, out of her) and Helena Bonham-Carter, the lead woman in the film.

Damn Hooper and his boy’s club, thanking two men and two women.

Judge Goes Personal on TBD

Mark Judge, a videographer who writes opinion pieces for The Daily Caller,  once wanted a job at TBD. In fact, he contacted then-GM Jim Brady last summer, who essentially said, thanks, but no.

Sour grapes? Judge has judgements about TBD — few positive. Examples: He says Brady should have “listened” to him. What’s more, he writes, sex writer Amanda Hess is “humorless.”

As for Brady, he says: “Brady had to truly embrace the freedom that was at his disposal. Hyperlocal is fine, and news, weather and sports are wonderful — all staples of any news organization and good for hits. But the truly exciting thing was that the freedom of the Internet would allow him to expand and include some exciting and unusual voices.”

Read the full story here.

TBD.com‘s Shocking Slip of the Tongue

Amanda Hess, who writes TBD.com‘s blog focusing on “Sex and gender, at work, in bed and on the street,” had this doozy of a correction on Oct. 8. We don’t think this can possibly be considered a Freudian slip — we hope not. Could be one to tell the grandchildren, or, well, maybe not the grandchildren.

Correction:
This blog post originally stated that one in three black men who have sex with me is HIV positive. In fact, the statistic applies to black men who have sex with men.

The gist of the post is that infections amongst black men are higher than any other group. Next month two organizations will begin a campaign to focus on and address that demographic and HIV.

By the way…This item is not a knock on Hess. We only wish reporters had corrections of this courage and magnitude every day of the week.

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