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Posts Tagged ‘Katherine Mangu-Ward’

Reason Mag Turns 45, Editors Have Managed Not to Kill Each Other

Nick Gillespie and Matt Welch fucking hate each other. Put them in the same air space and you’re likely to hear them discuss their persisting feelings of blind rage for each other. Without even a trace of a smile, Gillespie, dressed head to toe in his signature black frock, explains the dynamic between the two. “We have a tight relationship that usually ends in physical violence,” he says.

Welch, who is editor-in-chief of the magazine, casts a weary glance in Gillespie’s direction: “He’s from New Jersey.”

The editors of Reason Magazine, Reason.com and Reason TV flaunted their hatred Wednesday night at a party in the company newsroom off Dupont Circle to celebrate the mag’s 45-year anniversary. The scene wasn’t raucous. It was peaceful, pleasant and a rarity in Washington parties in that you could breathe, hear and get a drink easily.

One senses that the above scene between Gillespie and Welch has played out in variations before. No less funny, whatever the case. Gillespie, who edits the online publication and Reason TV, has been at Reason for 19 years. Welch, since 2002. “I took two years off for bad behavior at the LA Times,” says Welch.

When I bring up their searing hatred to another employee, it’s explained that they couldn’t possibly have that much friction between them — Gillespie spends a portion of the month in Ohio, where his kids live, and Welch moved to Brooklyn a year ago, but visits D.C. often.

Weave around the newsroom and there is a relaxed vibe along with a mix of various accented employees. A week old intern with spiky hair and English accent greets us outside. Ahh…he’s Guy Bentley, the greeter and the guy whose key fob card is letting guests upstairs. “Great, fantastic, really well,” he says, when asked how his internship is going. “UK is a little depressing,” he adds, explaining that he wants to move to the United States. He says he would’ve been here a week early but for a visa issue.

Later on we run into Guy again who’s chatting with another intern named Zenon Evans. He’s blond, sort of exotic looking and in red trousers. Maybe we were duped by the British intern, thinking all their interns are from around the world. “Where are you from?” we ask.  Clearly expecting him to say Sweden or Munich, he says, “Cleveland.”

Our faces fell as we dipped into complete and utter disappointment. Who comes to a Reason party to encounter an intern from Cleveland? (Only kidding, Zenon.) “I love writing,” he says. “I’m dedicated to the libertarian cause. I feel like I’m actually accomplishing something.”

Reason‘s newsroom is unique in that there is a glass-encased fishbowl of a room plopped in the center. It apparently has poor acoustics and who wants to be on display like a fish with everyone pointing? Nonetheless, it’s a unique place to chat and tonight it’s where the cuisine — a low-key mix of wraps, vegetable platters and such — is situated.

It’s here in the fishbowl where we bump into Matthew Feeney, a British (we think) accented assistant editor. He was born in Scotland, but his parents are from England and New Zealand so his accent is all fucked up. Asked what his pet peeve as an editor is, he replies, “Not for the record.” (Seriously. A softball question to end all softball questions and he can’t say on the record what his editorial pet peeve is? We make fun of him to his face about it, but eventually let it go.) Here’s what he will tell us. Spoiler alert: It has nothing to do with sex or violence. “I’ve been working here since May. I enjoy my colleagues and the freedom to write about what I want, when I want.” Don’t mess with this guy! He’ll kick your ass.

By far the weirdest thing in the newsroom is the male pants-less mannequin located by the bar in the main newsroom. It’s showing off the black Reason T-shirt. (See it after the jump…)

In the back of the office is a library complete with a gargoyle and skeleton head. The library is the place where journalists go to “think great thoughts,” Gillespie explains. It’s just outside the library that we meet Preston Cornish. What kind of a name is this? We have no idea, but he seems to be a solid American. He manages the business advisory council for Reason. Like Feeney, he loves his colleagues, but he doesn’t own any Reason apparel. “It’s a great group of people who are committed to advancing freedom,” he says. “We punch above our weight.”

Somehow we get into the topic of cussing in the newsroom. “First time I heard ‘bloody f–ing c-word’ at 10 a.m. I was like, ‘alright mate,’” said Cornish. (By the way, “c–t” in England isn’t nearly as bad as it is here.) He glances at Feeney, who is apparently a pretty foul-mouthed bloke.

Spotted in the crowd… Read more

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Morning Reading List, 03.26.08

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Good morning Washington. It’s Nancy Pelosi’s birthday!

Quickly navigate Morning Reading List:

REVOLVING DOOR | NEWSPAPERS | TV | ONLINE MEDIA | MAGAZINES | RADIO | JOBS

  • This election cycle has changed how you view Bill Clinton — in a bad way.

    REVOLVING DOOR

  • Crain’s Chicago Business reports, “Tribune Co. named Chandler Bigelow as chief financial officer, effectively immediately, to succeed Don Grenesko, who retired Monday.”

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    NEWSPAPERS

  • Barack Obama’s 37-minute March 18 address on race relations was the major event in a week in which he easily dominated the battle for media exposure, according to a Project for Excellence in Journalism study of campaign coverage from March 17-23.”

  • Just How Did John McCain Obtain What He Has in the Bank with the Press?” And “The Maverick and the Media

  • Modern Art Notes reports, “Washington Post, Pollack revisit an old stereotype”

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    TV

  • Behind in the Ratings, CBS News Hopes for Help From a Debate

  • ABC announced, “ABC News’ Jeremy Hubbard has been named co-anchor of ABC News’ early morning news programs ‘World News Now’ and ‘America This Morning,’ News President David Westin announced today. In addition to this role, Mr. Hubbard will contribute reports to all other ABC News’ broadcasts and platforms.”

  • An ABC release announced, “ABC’s ‘World News with Charles Gibson’ was the number one evening newscast among Adults 25-54 for the week of March 17-21. The ABC News broadcast averaged a 2.2/9 and 2.65 million among Adults 25-54, outperforming NBC’s “Nightly News” by 80,000. Week-to-week, ‘World News” advantage over NBC increased 33% in the key demo. Additionally, this marks the thirteenth time this season the ABC broadcast has finished first among Adults 25-54.”

  • A NBC release announced, “According to Nielsen Media Research
    data, ‘NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams’ was the most-watched network evening newscast, winning the week of March 17, 2008. The Williams-led newscast averaged 8.920 million total viewers, +456,000 more than ABC ‘World News” 8.464 million, and +2.302 million more than CBS ‘Evening News” 6.618 million. Season-to-date ‘Nightly’ leads ABC by +227K viewers. CBS ‘Evening News’ numbers are based on a three-day average for the week due to the NCAA tournament.”

  • WWD.com reports, “As shareholders prepare to gather for Time Warner Inc.’s annual meeting on May 16, 12 stockholding organizations have a proposal up for a vote that the post of chairman and chief executive officer be split. The proposal states that it is often in shareholders’ best interests to separate the positions, as conflicts of interest arise when one person holds both posts.”

  • The Hollywood Reporter reports, “Economic slowdown hits Hollywood”

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    ONLINE MEDIA

  • Rob Goodspeed asks, “Is PostPoints Worth It?” and discovered, “A quick look at the rewards dampened my enthusiasm. A $10 CVS gift card looked like a useful prize. However, at 3,385 points it would take me 677 days of Express reading or almost one year of reading both a print publication and the website to earn enough points to earn it.”

  • Reuters reports, “Virtual beer and vampires may no longer be enough to keep members of social networks like Facebook and News Corp’s MySpace riveted to their computers. Instead, the key to the future of these Web sites may lie in more practical functions, such as making plans, booking tickets or checking stock quotes.”

  • Dallas Business Journal reports, “American Airlines Inc. is hoping to win customers by becoming the first major airline to launch an application for users of the social networking Web site Facebook. American, owned by Fort Worth-based AMR Corp. (NYSE: AMR), said its application, called Travel Bag, lets Facebook users share travel experiences with friends, offer and read reviews on restaurants and shops, and create countdowns for upcoming events or trips.”

  • FastCompany.com reports, “On the verge of a revival last year, AOL suddenly imploded. The inside story of a journey to nowhere.”

  • The Independent reports, “Apax has cooled its interest in the £1.25bn auction for Reed Business Information (RBI), the publisher. Rivals United Business Media and Informa have already indicated that they are not interested in the auction.”

  • Jupiter Research reports, “Big Trend for 2008 Online Media: Re-Inventing the Network”

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    MAGAZINES

  • Tonight, join Reason for a happy hour at The Fab Lounge (1805 Connecticut Ave., NW 2nd floor), at 6.30PM. Reason’s Radley Balko, Nick Gillespie, Dan Hayes, Katherine Mangu-Ward, Michael C. Moynihan, Jesse Walker, David Weigel and Matt Welch will all be there to celebrate the publication of the magazine’s April issue, as well as the “advent of spring, with its attendant flowers and sunshiney days.”

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    RADIO

  • “DCRTV hears that recently-yanked MSNBC show host Tucker Carlson will be filling-in for David Burd on 3WT from 5:30 AM to 8 AM on Wednesday. He’ll be joining Jessica Doyle and Victoria Jones.”

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    JOBS

  • National Geographic Society is looking for a Producer, Web Franchise Programming.

  • Center For Independent Media is looking for a Deputy National Editorial Director.

  • Al Jazeera is looking for an Output Producer and a Planning Editor.

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    Hat Tips: DCRTV, TVNewser, IWantMedia, Romenesko, MediaBistro, JournalismJobs, JournalismNext