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Richard Horgan

[Email contact: rhorgan@gmail.com; personal Twitter account: @hollywoodspin] I have worked as a journalist and editor for several decades, beginning in Canada at age 17 with a full-time job at the Ottawa bureau of Associated Press Canada (Canadian Press).

The New Face of Patch: Tammy

In a brief but excellent item about the current post-AOL Patch landscape, Talking New Media’s D.B. Hebbard cites the following sad state of Midwestern affairs:

Several Patch sites appear to have become largely controlled by a local business that uses the site to promote their services. One Wisconsin site, for instance, only contains stories from someone labeled as “Tammy” who posts “opinion” pieces that may, or may not, actually be paid posts – it’s hard to tell.

We made the effort to track down Tammy’s work. What’s amazing is that Hale Global isn’t even trying to disguise the bot-like behavior of this contributor. And we’re betting that biography won’t be filled out soon.

TammyOakParkPatchBio

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Norm Pearlstine Dismisses Spreadsheet Furor [Updated]

Time__Inc_-logo-2ED06AA15C-seeklogo.com_Sometimes, Time-ing can be everything. New York contributing editor Gabriel Sherman has been working on a big feature article about Time Inc. that is due next week.

So… When Gawker fanned the flames of the Sponsored Content Apocalypse with its Monday report about a controversial Sports Illustrated spreadsheet, Sherman was in a perfect warm-phone position to get comment from a top executive. He spoke today with Time Inc. chief content officer Norm Pearlstine:

Pearlstine pushed back hard against the criticism of the document. He said the controversy has been drummed up by the [Newspaper] Guild as part of a tense contract negotiation.

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Vanity Fair Scouting for New Oscar Party Location

ShutterstockSofiaVergaraVF2012Nice lede from E!’s Marc Malkin. He writes:

Perhaps throwing a party for Hollywood’s biggest stars in a parking lot wasn’t such a good idea after all.

Vanity Fair confirms to Malkin that indeed, after a year in the main parking lot of Sunset Plaza, publication event staff – per Graydon Carter‘s directive – are evaluating new locations for next year’s star-studded bash. However, a spokesperson was equally quick to clarify that despite what Malkin had heard, the embattled Beverly Hills Hotel has not been visited as part of this process.

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Kirk Douglas on the Kindness of Lauren Bacall

AmericanAcademyDramaticArtsLogoThe year was 1943. And as Kirk Douglas touchingly recalls in this week’s issue of The Hollywood Reporter, the simple gesture of fellow aspiring actor Lauren Bacall made a profound difference to his early Big Apple experiences:

I met Betty when she was 17 and I was 24. We were both studying at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. I was on my own in New York with meager funds. That winter, Betty saw me shivering in my thin overcoat. She didn’t say anything, but she talked her uncle into giving me one of his two thick coats.

I wore it for three years. That sort of unassuming kindness was one of her most endearing characteristics. When I had the honor of presenting Betty with her honorary Oscar in 2009, I told the audience: “People said Bacall was ‘tough.’ She’s a pussycat with a heart of gold.”

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Retired New York Cop Banks on MegaBall$

The general consensus is that the median age of regular metropolitan daily newspaper readers is way up there. This Saturday, no doubt, each and every one of those Newsday demo-members will thoroughly enjoy deputy entertainment editor Daniel Bubbeo‘s article “Retired Cop, 82, Still on a Beat He Loves: Showbiz.”

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World Awaits Anna Wintour’s Ice Bucket Response

The ALS #icebucketchallenge may be about to hit a stylish new high. Thanks to Bee Shaffer.

Via Instagram, Shaffer accepted the challenge from Girls star Allison Williams and passed it forward to the “other AW in her life.” You know, the one who favors a Prada rain slicker.

BeeShafferIceBucket

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University Professor Recalls a ‘Fearless’ James Foley

JamesFoleyPicIn between Libya and Syria, journalist James Foley spoke in February 2012 at San Diego State University. His February 9 talk with students was part of the series “Understanding the Arab Spring.”

In the wake of Foley’s apparent, horrific execution at the hands of ISIS, SDSU economics professor Hisham Foad has shared with News 10 San Diego reporter Rachel Bianco some memories of this intrepid truth-seeker:

“The story he was telling was like a movie,” Foad recalled. “It was better than a movie almost, going out there, getting captured, his life in captivity.”

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Penske to Acquire Fairchild Fashion Media

FFMLogoCondé Nast wouldn’t comment. But according to New York Times media reporter Ravi Somaiya, Jay Penske is about to add an impressive group of media properties to his PMC empire.

From Somaiya’s report:

Condé Nast plans to sell Fairchild Fashion Media, the group behind trade publications like Women’s Wear Daily and Footwear News, to Penske Media for around $100 million, according to a person familiar who has been briefed on the deal.

Fairchild’s employees will go with the new company, the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity to reveal an as-yet unannounced deal, said.

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Arianna Huffington: ‘I’m 64-Years-Old and I’ve Never Had Plastic Surgery’

MilaMoursiTwitterProfilePicThere is a fountain of brand information in the latest installment of Harper’s Bazaar‘s “Beauty Diaries.” Here for example is what Arianna Huffington told the magazine’s senior beauty editor Jessica Prince about her approach to skin care:

“I’m 64-years-old and I’ve never had Botox, fillers or plastic surgery, but I do believe in great maintenance. I see aesthetician Mila Moursi for facials or microdermabrasion every three weeks. She specializes in women who don’t want to have plastic surgery.”

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South Africa Reclaims the Memory of Famed Anti-Apartheid Journalist

Following an exhumation of Nat Nakasa‘s remains last Friday and New York City memorial service over the weekend, South African Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa arrived back home this afternoon bearing the late journalist’s remains. It has been nearly five decades since the reporter died of an apparent suicide in New York; next month, he will be returned to the ground in his hometown of Chesterville, KwaZulu-Natal.

NiemanFoundationLogoNakasa died in 1965 after completing a Nieman fellowship at Harvard. At the time, the South African government had made it impossible for him to return home. From a BBC report:

It is fitting that one of the country’s most celebrated writers should return home as South Africans celebrate 20 years of freedom.

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