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FBLA Predicted LA Times Changes 2 Years Ago

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Back in 2006, we asked readers what would improve the LA Times.

Joanne Carson:
Q: What’s the one thing you’d like to see the paper add?

Check! LA Times has added an animal blog: Unleashed. Where it’s always shark week.

Least favorite section?

Brady Westwater
West magazine–Absolutely clueless about LA, much less the West. Have considered class action suit against it on behalf of… West…for defamation of character.

And poof! West vanished.

Kevin F. Sherry

Q: What’s one thing you’d want to change?
A: Less reporting of stuff we read about online yesterday. More analysis of that. And more features and local coverage. That’s all papers can do to compete anymore.

LA Now is a step in the right direction, don’t you think?

The Votes are In…
FBLA Asks the Hard Question: Least Favorite LAT Section

Paul Krassner’s Realist Archives Is Webby Honoree


Paul Krassner is a Webby Honoree. And what’s cool about this is that most of the writing on the site isn’t remotely new–it’s his archives.

The Realist Archive Project has been selected as an Official Honoree for the Best Copy/Writing category in The 12th Annual Webby Awards.

Nearly all the actual nominees for the Webby Awards are corporate sites, and where’s the fun in that?

Krassner also has a selection of his columns from AVN on his site.


FBLA 20 Questions: Paul Krassner

KCET Moves Series Over Fears of the FCC

KCET-TV pulled its planned broadcast of Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?, which was to begin airing Sunday, after concerns arose about possible fines from the Federal Communications Commission.

KCET’s Laurel Lambert told FBLA:

The issue of complaints is complicated by the fact that the series was originally fed at 10 p.m., which made it less vulnerable to being subject to possible FCC complaints about language and content. Because we were still in a pledge drive when it was fed, we moved it to 4 p.m.last Sunday, but pulled it when we discovered it was flagged. However, it is now scheduled to air Sat. May 17 (9-11) and Sat. May 24 9-11. Each night we’re airing two parts in order and the flagged episodes are at 10.

The documentary series, which examines the effect of social and economic inequities upon health, contains a barely audible expletive by a girl on a cell phone in the background and a brief beginning of an amputation scene in a segment about rampant diabetes among Native Americans in Arizona.

The FCC hasn’t received any complaints about the series or the content and not every utterance merits an FCC fine.

And of course, pledge breaks are a necessary evil in the world of public television.

Kay Hanley–Life After Letters to Cleo


Remember 10 Things I Hate About You? Our fave guilty pleasure teen movie. Not only did the movie have Heath Ledger, Larry Miller, and Julia Stiles, it had Letters to Cleo covering Nick Lowe’s Cruel to Be Kind.

And Letters to Cleo was fronted by cute blond chirp, Kay Hanley. Who blogs. And who also sings behind Hannah Montana and tells Babble all about it.

And get this–she lives in LA. Los Feliz to be exact.

What’s she doing these days?

Michael [Eisenstein, her husband and former guitarist for Letters To Cleo] and I wrote and produced music for the Care Bears: Oopsy Does It movie. I loved writing those songs! “Caring Changes the World” is one of the best songs I’ve written with Michael.

What’s cool is that she so easily could have dismissed her Care Bears oeuvre or snarked about it or trashed it, but didn’t.

Her MySpace Page has her rather more grownup music.

The Folio: 40 Announced


Folio: magazine, not to be confused with Conde Nast’s money-loser Portfolio, makes some list of magazine world influentials or top folks or something like that:

The 2008 FOLIO: 40
Our annual list of magazine industry influencers and innovators.
Welcome to the 2008 FOLIO: 40—the oldest, most comprehensive and most
distinguished compilation of its kind. As always, we’ve spent the lastyear examining the entire industry, as well as a few markets that
intersect it, for individuals who best represent an increasingly
multifaceted media landscape.

Multifaceted landscape? Like mountains and ditches? Anyway, the Californians who made the list are

Michael Arrington, founder of TechCrunch, which is a blog, not a magazine.

The Spears Family, without whom magazine editors would be desperate. Fun fact:

A Britney tabloid cover, on average, equals 1.28 million in newsstand sales; OK!’s Jamie Lynn scoop sent the magazine over the million mark for the first time.

Owen Van Natta and Jordan Hoffner, of YouTube, which is also not a magazine. They told magazine editors to give up on their own ideas for social networking:

Your audience already uses Facebook and YouTube and isn’t going to migrate to your site.

Folio: also thinks that Eric Mika, SVP, Publishing Director, The Hollywood Reporter, is someone to watch.

Media Wire Daily called the list a “stroke job”. Nice.

Natalie Zee Drieu, Sr. Editor at Craft, is very happy with her award, which is the right response.

George Clooney–Salad Spritzer. Watermelon Freak, Pepper Grinder


Ian Parker succeedes where Joel Stein failed. In the New Yorker’s 10 page celebrity profile, we learn that George Clooney sprays his salad with Balsamic Breeze:

a wonderfully balanced blend of bold balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil-all in an innovative spray bottle. Plus, there’s just 1 calorie per spray!

And Clooney’s got the hardware: electronic pepper grinder which doubles “as a marital aid.”

And he’s hot for fruit:

His refrigerator contained many individual servings of watermelon, in plastic tubs.

Stein had the guy over for dinner, and yet didn’t enlighten us, the readers, with any of this vitally important information. Where are his editors? Where are the standards? Henry Luce is twirling in his grave.

Where’s Elsa Ramon?


Is KABC’s newsvixen Elsa Ramon hitting the bricks? KABC doesn’t have her bio up on the site anymore (Here’s the cached version.)

We’ve heard she’s got her resume up at TV Her old bio says that she loves

spending time with her daughter, traveling, and trying anything new!

She should lots of time to do all of the above. Anyone with more info, you know where to find us.

Will Tribune Stop the Presses at LAT Plant in Orange County?


Tribune’s mad dash for cash might have some more repercussions here in Los Angeles. If things don’t perk up, FBLA has heard that the LAT Orange county production facility will be closed in January, 2009, with 41 workers losing their jobs. But imagine the savings.

Sam Zell has a payment due in December of $650 million, and over a billion in 2009, so what happens if the payments aren’t made?

Zell Conference Call April 17th

Is Paradigm Buying UTA?


There’s a rumor floating around that Paradigm, thanks to Sam Gores and his brothers, is going to buy UTA. UTA’s been hemorrhaging agents and others lately (like Nick Stevens and Ben Stiller), according to Nikki Finke, and her commenters are mentioning Paradigm, as well. (Of course, one poster points out that Paradigm can barely pay the electric bill.)

Remember when Paradigm bought Writers & Artists Agency?

Of course, the most important question is what will happen to the much-coveted UTA job list?

LA Times Serial Novel: Spinning Out of Control–Paper Begs for Pro Writers

Steve Lopez started a serial novel at the Los Angeles Times, but those pesky amateurs are so useless. Sue Horton sent this missive:

Are you at that point in writing something that you’d rather scrub the kitchen floor with a toothbrush than type another word? DO NOT DESPAIR.You see, we’ve started a serial novel at the LA Times, and it needs a new chapter every day. So, instead of solving your own intractable writing problems, you can help solve ours. The problem so far isn’t too few submissions–our slowest day has brought about 100, and our busiest more than 700. But, after a week of chapters by writers without much experience, the plot is spinning a little out of control. We sure could use some real writers among the entrants. If you’re bored and looking for a gig that pays nothing and carries no guarantee of publication, PLEASE consider entering. You can read the novel so far at (Today’s chapter will be up by 7 p.m.) Sorry for the impersonal email, and looking forward to what happens next. I think.

Why not just hire a couple of novelists and be done with it?