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Scandalous

James Deen Tells Reporter the New York Times Was ‘Accurate Enough’

There’s a quote to be savored at the half-way mark of Topless Robot editor Luke Y. Thompson‘s article “On the Set of a Sci-Fi Porno.” It was given to LYT by hot young adult (and budding crossover) star James Deen in the midst of the making of Surviving Humanity, a film intended to first be released as an R-rated offering.

Thompson tried (and failed) to get Deen to dish on the actor’s recent The Canyons co-star Lindsay Lohan. But when he brought up that infamous New York Times Magazine piece by Stephan Rodrick, about the movie’s tumultuous production, he fielded this answer:

Deen says only that it’s “accurate enough – it is real-life events reflected in a mirror and retold for dramatic effect. There’s enough in it that’s true that we can’t say it’s not true, but there’s also so much else there than what they described just in that article.”

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LA Times Delivery Drivers Shot by LAPD Get $40,000 in Lieu of New Truck

Well, this was infinitely more complicated than it needed to be. After pumping 102 bullets into the truck of Margie Carranza, 47, and her mother, Emma Hernandez, 71, during the hunt for Christopher Dorner, LAPD volunteered to replace the truck, which the women used to deliver newspapers. When it came time to actually make good on its promise, however, the LAPD tried to force the women to pay the taxes on the new truck, claiming its hands were tied by the IRS.

According to the LA Times, the LAPD finally came to its senses yesterday and worked out a reasonable solution: give the women $40,000 so they can buy their own truck, and still afford to pay the relevant taxes.

The voluntary settlement still doesn’t prevent the pair from suing LAPD, particularly for shooting Hernandez twice in the neck. We’ll see if it will still buys the goodwill that it should have if it had been handled sensibly.

Reuters Social Media Editor Matthew Keys Indicted for Aiding Anonymous

OK, this is an odd one. Matthew Keys, a social media editor at Reuters and a former employee of the Tribune Company-owned Fox affiliate KTXL in Sacramento, has just been charged by the feds with helping Anonymous hack into the Tribune Company website in late 2010. More specifically, they are charging Keys with giving away log in keys to the Tribune website in an online chat room. Someone then took the log in data and used it to mess with the online version of an LA Times news story.

From the Times:

The indictment says Keys provided members of the hacker group Anonymous with log-in credentials for a computer server belonging to KTXL FOX 40’s corporate parent, the Tribune Co.

According to the indictment, Keys identified himself on an Internet chat forum as a former Tribune Co. employee.

After providing log-in credentials, Keys allegedly encouraged the Anonymous members to disrupt the website.  According to the indictment, at least one of the computer hackers used the credentials provided by Keys to log into the Tribune Co. server, and ultimately that hacker made changes to the web version of a Los Angeles Times news feature.

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Report: LA Stripper Does a Number on Hearst Exec

On the same day that feature documentary Citizen Hearst is opening in LA and a handful of other U.S. cities, allegations in the New York Post of a lurid sex scandal involving one of the media company’s top executives are being fanned across the Hollywood trades and beyond. From today’s “Page Six” dispatch, posted online just after midnight:

Top Hearst executive Scott Sassa has left the company over a sensational extortion plot involving a Los Angeles-based stripper he was sexting, multiple sources exclusively tell Page Six.

Sassa — the high-flying president of Hearst Entertainment & Syndication group who manages the company’s interests in ESPN, Lifetime and recent successes including executive producing the hit miniseries The Bible for the History Channel — is quitting after the stripper forwarded sexy texts between her and Sassa to Hearst Corp.’s very conservative top brass.

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Newspaper Delivery Drivers Shot by LAPD Won’t Get New Truck

The LAPD PR-nightmare continues unabated. After mistakenly shooting more than 100 holes through the truck of Margie Carranza, 47, and her mother, Emma Hernandez, 71, (who also took two bullets to the neck) during the hunt for Christopher Dorner, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck apologized and promised to replace their truck.

The new truck, however, is apparently not going to happen, according to NBC4, who spoke with the pair’s attorney Glen Jonas.

According to Jonas, LAPD and Galpin Ford wanted his clients to pose for a photo opportunity and pay income tax on the truck. The women no longer want the truck after they were told they needed to fill out a 1099 form for the donation, Jonas said Monday.

“You tried to murder the woman, now you’re telling her she can’t have a four-wheel drive, you’re telling her she can’t sell it and you’ve got to be taxed on it?” Jonas said. “How would anyone react to that?”

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Publisher Says Threats of Violence Behind Cancellation of Michael Vick Book Tour

When Barnes & Noble announced Monday the cancellation of Michael Vick‘s scheduled book signings at 3 of the bookseller’s stores, animal lovers celebrated. Thousands had protested Vick’s appearances at the B&N stores through an online petition, calls to the bookseller’s customer service line, and comments on the Facebook pages of B&N and Vick. For a moment, it seemed like a grassroots victory. Tweets like these summarized the celebratory tone:

But this was not a case of a corporation finding their conscience. On Monday afternoon, Vick’s publisher released a statement that the book tour had been cancelled by Worthy Publishing “after credible threats of personal harm and property damage were received by Barnes & Noble Booksellers and distinguished independent bookstore Books & Greetings in Northvale, New Jersey.”

With one press release, the story had changed. Both Barnes & Noble and Michael Vick had become sympathetic characters, their detractors potentially violent criminals. The author, publisher, and book sellers were able to back out of a book tour that had become a public relations nightmare, all without ceding any ground to the protestors.

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Michael Vick’s Appearances at Barnes & Noble Stores Cancelled

According to the Barnes & Noble website, Michael Vick‘s upcoming book signing events at 3 of the bookseller’s stores have been cancelled by the book’s publisher.

Animal lovers began an online petition late last week demanding Barnes & Noble cancel Vick’s in-store appearances. The bookseller’s Facebook page quickly filled up with comments from customers angry that B&N was hosting an event with a convicted animal abuser and killer.

Protestors got their way, but if the B&N website is to be believed, it is Worthy Publishing, the publisher of Vick’s book Finally Free: An Autobiography, that cancelled the events. Whether the cancellations were a reaction to customer protests remains unclear. Neither Barnes & Noble nor Worthy Publishing have commented the issue. We’ve reached out to both companies, but have yet to hear back.

Previously on FishbowLA: Michael Vick Book Signings Spark Barnes & Noble Boycott

Michael Vick Book Signings Spark Barnes & Noble Boycott

Bookselling giant Barnes & Noble is taking some heat for hosting multiple signings this month for Philadelphia Eagles quarterback and convicted animal abuser Michael Vick. Vick is scheduled to appear at the stores to promote his new book, Michael Vick: Finally Free An Autobiography.

A petition was started last week asking Barnes & Noble to cancel the signings, and the bookseller’s Facebook page has since been flooded with comments from angry customers. Many readers are vowing that they will never shop at B&N again if the company doesn’t cancel Vick’s scheduled appearances, and several have called for B&N to stop selling the book altogether.

While we at FishbowlLA aren’t generally in favor of boycotting bookstores, it’s hard to see gruesome photographs of the victims of dogfighting and remain impartial.

We’ve reached out to Barnes & Noble for their reaction to the controversy, and will let you know if we hear back.

Former Boss Comes to the Defense of Embattled BuzzFeed Reporter

Before Tessa Stuart joined BuzzFeed, she worked at LA Weekly. Today, that publication’s editor-in-chief Sarah Fenske has done what very few elsewhere in the media have dared to up to this point: firmly take Stuart’s side.

The crux of Fenske’s argument is that she feels there’s no way, under any circumstances (logged by the CPB or not logged), that Palestinian filmmaker Emad Burnat could have been detained for the amount of time Michael Moore first claimed (1.5 hours). From her op ed:

The Atlantic revealed that Burnat’s plane arrived at LAX at 4:59 p.m. , fourteen minutes behind schedule. Even if the plane was blessed with a relatively quick deboarding, it’s hard to imagine that Burnat could have possibly first encountered federal agents any earlier than 5:20 p.m.

Weirdly, The Atlantic lets Moore suggest otherwise: “In the half-hour between Burnat’s arrival and the first log entry cited in BuzzFeed’s post, Moore says Burnat and his family had already been taken to two other holding areas.” Oh really? So the plane landed at 4:59, and somehow magically everyone was ushered into various holding areas within just a few minutes, only to be detained and shuffled to room after room in just 29 minutes?

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Another Very Sad Scientology Tale

At the end of his latest blog piece, Church of Scientology watchdog reporter Tony Ortega writes the following:

CODA: The Bunker just wants to add, on a personal note, that back in the day, this was the kind of story you would find on the front page of the LOS ANGELES FREAKING TIMES, and not on the blog of some dude in New York City.

We know things are tough at the formerly great newspaper out there, but it was once the leading journal of all things Scientology. Doesn’t it bother anyone there that so many Los Angeles Scientology stories are broken here rather than in the city’s supposed paper of record?

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