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Posts Tagged ‘David Plotz’
Slate editor David Plotz wants to make one thing clear about his pub’s new pay-for service for “vociferous readers” -it’s NOT a pay wall!
“We’re not asking you to pay for stories, and we’re not turning on a meter that stops you 10 stories into the month,” Plotz wrote in a blog post today. “Everything that’s free on Slate will remain free for all Slate readers.”
But the new Slate Plus will offer some perks to readers who pay $5 a month or $50 a year -ranging from members-only live chats to ad-free podcasts. It’s all part of a strategy to become less reliant on ad revenue, says Plotz.
“Today Slate is growing and profitable, but I don’t need to tell you that journalism is an industry in flux, with an uncertain financial future,” he wrote. “We have long depended on revenue from advertising to make a great magazine without charging readers. And while advertising remains central to our success, we think we’d be better off if we were less dependent on it.”
Right now the list of perks for Slate Plus members is relatively small-bore (discounts on Slate merchandise, for example) but Plotz says they will continue to add new benefits periodically, much like Amazon’s premium service, Amazon Prime.
Check out the site’s FAQ here for more info.
The woman who brings us headlines that would make your grandmother blush will be at Sixth & I synagogue in downtown Washington on Sept. 11. Recent headlines of the Slate advice column “Dear Prudence” include everything from “I’m Marrying My Late Wife’s Sister,” to “I’m accused of sending crotch shots” and “My Ex is a Perv.”
Slate announced today that it will no longer refer to Washington’s NFL team as the “Redskins.” Instead they will refer to it as “Washington’s NFL team.” It joins Washington City Paper, the Philadelphia Daily News and Buffalo News in the cause. Editor David Plotz says of the team name, “It’s extremely tacky and dated—like an old aunt who still talks about ‘colored people’ or limps her wrist to suggest someone’s gay.”
In a story published today, Plotz reasons, “Time passes, the world changes, and all of a sudden a well-intentioned symbol is an embarrassment. Here’s a quick thought experiment: Would any team, naming itself today, choose ‘Redskins’ or adopt the team’s Indian-head logo? Of course it wouldn’t.”
“Changing the way we talk is not political correctness run amok. It reflects an admirable willingness to acknowledge others who once were barely visible to the dominant culture, and to recognize that something that may seem innocent to you may be painful to others. In public discourse, we no longer talk about groups based on their physical traits: No one would ever refer to Asians as yellow-skinned. This is why the majority of teams with Indian nicknames have dropped them over the past 40 years.“
Slate is owned by the Washington Post Company, which just sold WaPo to Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. Plotz writes, “Speaking as a Post subscriber, I wish they would change.”
Looking at the fall lineup of appearances at Sixth & I, organizers decided to spin them as a “Breakfast Club” series of appearances with the brain, the athlete, the basket case, the criminal, the princess, and actress Molly Ringwald, who starred in the 1985 film. Ringwald appears on Sept. 12 for her literary debut, When it Happens to You: A Novel in Stories.
The Brain: Hanna Rosin, Senior Editor at The Atlantic, for The End of Men: And the Rise of Women. She’ll appear at the synagogue with her husband, Slate Editor David Plotz, on Sept. 11 for a “battle of the sexes-style meeting of the minds.”
The Athlete: Chris Cleave for Incendiary on Oct. 3.
The Basket Case: Daniel Smith for Monkey Mind on Oct. 15.
The Princess: Stacy London, star of What Not to Wear, for her memoir, The Truth About Style, on Oct. 4.
The Criminals: Brothers David and Peter Rothbart. A release says the duo is embarking on a 75-city 10th Anniversary tour to celebrate Davy’s book of personal essays, My Heart Is an Idiot, Peter’s album, You Are What You Dream, and a brand new issue of FOUND. The tour stops at Sixth & I on Sept. 24.
By Betsy Rothstein, Peter Ogburn, Eddie Scarry and Piranhamous
Relationships are funny. They can last nights, years, or a lifetime. That can mean an eternity of laughs and love and mutual respect. It can also mean that you get stuck in a rut where it just drags on and on and you can’t stand the way the other person fake laughs at your jokes or crunches their cereal in the morning or never actually FOLDS the laundry, they just throw it on the floor. But, breakups happen. Sometimes, it’s no one’s fault — just simple, obvious incompatibility. Other times, it’s personal. Two people united in a vile hatred for each other. Heated blowups, spitting in food, infidelity, rage-filled silence and threats of lawsuits are all common symptoms of a relationship gone south. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, today we bring you the Top 10 Most Memorable Media Breakups of recent times. Enjoy!
10. Keith Olbermann and MSNBC — Calling Keith Olbermann a “big fish in a small pond” overstates the ratings at MSNBC. He was more like a goldfish in a cereal bowl. But still, he was MSNBC’s biggest fish. So when they split last year, it came as a shock to his fan(s). It was an abusive relationship, for sure. Tales of Olbermann’s temper tantrums are the stuff of legend. The world in which his ego lives is one in where he his popular and influential, the world in which his body lives is the real world. When Olbermann abruptly announced on January 21, 2011, that that night’s Countdown was his last, his fan(s) cried, and throngs of Americans he painted as enemies, laughed. Both knew he would be back, his ego wouldn’t allow him to keep his opinions to his favorite and most loyal audience – himself. He returned to basic cable last fall, on something called Current TV. With production values just this side of public access and an audience almost as small, Keith quickly returned to his abusive habits. After some couple’s therapy, things seem to be going more smoothly. Not audience wise, no one watches Current TV, but at least Keith isn’t abusing the staff anymore. Winner: MSNBC. They unloaded an angry man for whom no one enjoyed working. Loser: Olbermann. He’s now in the basement (both in ratings and, from the looks of it, his set). His contract with Current TV is technically larger, but based on company stock which, if the black hole that is his ratings don’t improve, is less valuable than a plastic bag filled with chewed gum. — Piranhamous
9. Pat Buchanan and MSNBC — As the closest thing to a Republican as MSNBC will allow on its air, you’d think Pat Buchanan would’ve had some job security simply based on the network’s desire to hold on to the last thread of a plausible claim of credibility and objectivity. If you thought that you’d be wrong. Buchanan, a former Republican and Reform Party candidate for President, was suspended for having opinions that strayed from the progressive orthodoxy MSNBC has sacrificed its objectivity for. Color of Change, the race-based thought police group, with the help of other left-wing groups, paid for an Astroturf campaign against Buchanan, to which MSNBC brass was only too willing to cave. Buchanan has a long history of saying stupid things, but had comfortably settled into the role of “right-wing” dancing monkey for MSNBC’s left-wing organ grinders. When the pennies stopped flowing he was cast aside for a newer, incredibly stupid model – Meghan McCain. While Pat is smart, McCain is not. Pat would probably call it “affirmative action,” but it’s really, like our credit rating, a downgrading. Pat could make points and use facts that would stump and contradict MSNBC hosts, Meghan confuses the words “modicum” and “emoticon.” Winner: No one. They’re like the couple that should’ve broken up years ago, but stayed together for the kids. The kids are grown now, though they still live at home, so this break-up was a long time coming. Buchanan is ready to retire, and he’d actually have a larger audience if he retired to The Villages and just gave speeches in the rec room. MSNBC now has a pure line-up of progressive mouthpieces, so their audience won’t be threatened by being exposed to opposing viewpoints. It’s win-win. Well, technically it’s lose-lose, but who’s counting? — Piranhamous
8. Eliot Spitzer and Kathleen Parker– Almost immediately after ex-New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer and WaPo‘s Kathleen Parker were teamed up for a primetime show on CNN, there were rumors that things just were cooling between the two. The show, titled “Parker Spitzer,” started in October 2010. Ratings were terrible, usually putting the show in last place in the cable news race. Then, just four months after its debut, Parker announced she was leaving. A report in the New York Post said that Parker often felt upstaged by Spitzer who was more adversarial in his questioning of guests. The report said Parker “stormed off the set” during one taping of the program in November. But who ever thought Parker and Spitzer, who once had a thing for prostitutes, would make good bedfellows? After Parker scrammed for good, Spitzer was back the following week flying solo with a new program, “In the Arena.” That show itself was canceled nine months later. — Eddie Scarry
7. Politico and EVERYONE – Few media outlets have broken more hearts than the behemoth that is Politico. Last year alone, we saw them lay waste to several high profile reporters. Amie Parnes left her perch as FLOTUS-ass-kisser-in-Chief to cover the White House for The Hill. Chris Frates left Politico last year and jumped to NJ. This was particularly heartbreaking, since Frates had been with Politico since the beginning. Soon enough Politico threatened with threats of a lawsuit after Frates allegedly used a reader list for his new job — a charge NJ has always denied. Nonetheless, he pulled names to appease the situation. Kendra Marr resigned after she was busted plagiarizing the work of NYT writer Susan Stellin. We could go on and on and on with all the reporters that left Politico last year, but the most notable was Ben Smith, who left to become Editor-in-Chief at BuzzFeed. Sure, he’s still associated with Politico, but let’s not kid ourselves. They’re friends with benefits at best. — Peter Ogburn
6. David Shuster and MSNBC – This one goes back to 2010. MSNBC just didn’t know WHAT to do with David Shuster. He was their utility man, filling in for Keith Olbermann and various MSNBC shows. He had his own show with Tamron Hall, but no one could decide on which time slot to put him in. All of the back and forth and non-committal behavior from MSNBC prompted Shuster to explore his options. He filmed a pilot with CNN, which is a HUGE no-no. When MSNBC boss Phil Griffin heard of the news, Shuster was “suspended indefinitely” and later, sent packing. Shuster has landed on his feet after the ordeal. Or maybe he’s just landed. He is at Current TV as the primary substitute host for Olbermann and he hosts a weekend radio show on 1480AM. He also has plans to launch an investigative journalism website. Shuster gushed about MSNBC. Think warm fuzzies. “The breakup with MSNBC was amicable,” he told FishbowlDC. “We parted on mutually respectful terms… and I continue to have many close friends there. Furthermore, leaving MSNBC opened up some amazing doors for me — a rewarding internet venture, weekly radio gigs that are as much fun as one can have in broadcasting, and the opportunity on Current TV to deliver the kind of analysis/commentary that I’ve always desired. So, I have no regrets and wish the best to everybody at MSNBC.” — Peter Ogburn
See the five remaining breakups…
QUOTES of the DAY
ARMS CROSSED: Look closely around House Maj. Leader Eric Cantor‘s (R-Va.) boardroom table and you see TWT‘s Senior Editor for the Opinion Page Emily Miller two people to the left of Cantor. Politico‘s Jon Allen called her out for this picture that appeared in Politico Monday. Allen wrote, “You’re in the center of the top photo on politico.com, arms crossed in annoyance? skepticism? chilliness?” Miller replied, “LOL…I am bored.” The photograph accompanied a story by Allen and colleague Jake Sherman with the headline, “Cantor ascends as GOP voice.”
“The crickets and or cicadas have somehow perfected the mid-90s New York car alarm tonight.” – Slate‘s John Dickerson in a Monday tweet.
Michelle gets flack for being at the Shack
“Uh, yes … I’ll have the usual. << Michelle Obama at the super-healthy Shake Shack.” — Politico‘s Matt Negrin in a Monday tweet after Politico CLICK reported that the first lady was spotted at Shake Shack in Dupont Circle. Read here.
Journo is clear Friday Night Lights fan
“Tomorrow, ESPN will air the first 2 episodes (best pilot ever) of Friday Night Lights so people can fall in love w it for 1st time or again.” Human Events Tony Lee in a Monday tweet. What Lee may not know is that he shares his strong feelings for the show with Slate’s online Magazine Editor David Plotz, who has already fallen in love with the show. It’s his must-see TV as he informed in a previous FishbowlDC interview.
Roll Call editorial asst. has a crush on who?
“Hey look, Edward Cullen is in #HarryPotter. I really did find him attractive pre-Twilight. #hpmarathon” — Roll Call‘s Jessica Estepa in a Monday tweet about Edward Cullin, the character in “Twilight” played by teen heart throb Robert Pattinson.
Bachelor’s ex says paparazzi helped destroy her relationship
“Chris needs to ask Emily to be the next Bachelorette before she leaves the set. — TWT‘s Emily Miller on Monday night during ABC’s “The Bachelorette.” During this especially candid episode, Emily Maynard, the blonde chosen by previous bachelor Brad Womack, came on and shook with tears about their recent breakup. She also complained that the paparazzi followed her to the grocery store and helped destroy their relationship. Miller added, knowingly, “If Brad can’t make it work with perfect Emily, he will never get married.” (Above, the couple in happier times.)
Boybander gives kudos to Good Magazine
“Respect to @GOOD for paying contributors before publication. Never had that happen to me before.” — Wired.com‘s Spencer Ackerman in a Monday tweet.
NYT‘s Mark Leibovich was among several Washington journalists who came away from the National Magazine Awards (nicknamed the “Ellies” for their elephant-shapped trophies) this week with accolades. Leibovich won the magazine an award for Profile Writing for his unforgettable story on the life and times of Politico‘s Mike Allen. The awards were doled out by the American Society of Magazine Editors.
“These award things are a total crap shoot, but yes it is nice to win,” Leibovich remarked to FishbowlDC. “I think we get some elephant shaped trophy in the deal though I haven’t seen it.”
It can be strange when you’re writing an item about an item on yourself. Allen took a detached approach. In Playbook, he called it a story on “Playbook” and wrote that it was “one of The New York Times Magazine’s most-read, most-searched and most-shared articles ever.” Allen wishes Leibovich well. “Happy for him!” he wrote FBDC over email. “Congratulations to him and The New York Times magazine.” .
Does this mean Leibo will once again be invited to the Allbritton brunch next year? (They snubbed him this year.) If you somehow missed the Allen profile that blew up his readership, see it here.
In other award news, National Geographic was named Magazine of the Year, Foreign Policy‘s Editor-in-Chief Susan Glasser won for News Reporting and Slate’s Editor David Plotz won for General Excellence in Digital Media.
See the complete list here.
There are Freudian slips and then there’s what Slate did Tuesday of this week when a headline writer must have gotten his or her thoughts twisted in a knot.
Slate editor David Plotz issued a statement to Big Journalism, which noticed the error, Wednesday morning stating the headline was unintended. He wrote, “It’s embarrassing. It’s a mistake, and of course we didn’t intend it. It slipped by our corrections monitoring yesterday night. We’re correcting it now.”
The correction added to the end of story: “Correction, Feb. 23: This post’s headline originally included a profanity. It has been fixed.”
BigGovernment wasn’t satisfied. They pointed out that during the ’08 presidential race, liberal activists wore T-shirts that read: “Sarah Palin is a c***” with the c-word fully spelled out.” They spell out the journalistic mishap, saying, “The Slate article itself does not bear a timestamp, but the comments begin at “Yesterday, 5:18:42 p.m.” indicating the article with the offensive headline was up for approximately eighteen hours before being corrected after being queried about it by Big Journalism.”
Want to gab with Slate?
- the shootings in Arizona
- Freshmen in Congress
- GOP contenders for the 2012 presidential race
Of course we wondered whether Slate‘s savvy reporter Dave Weigel will be there. “As for Weigel, the Political Gabfest features David Plotz, John Dickerson and Emily Bazelon. Weigel won’t be on stage with them, but being that it’s a Slate event there’s a good chance he’ll be in the audience,” a spokeswoman said.
Tickets are $12. Purchase them here.
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