Archives: August 2007
Mark Scott of Business Week notes that the British are not taking the declining numbers of daily print newspaper readers — and the dropping ad revenues — lying down. Young people, as the old adage goes, don’t read newspapers. So what is a paper to do? Gloomy, Spenglerian meditations on the nature of decline won’t change the reality of the situation, which, for print journos, is dire.
Since English is the lingua franca on a globalized internet, the great American and British newspapers have a unique opportunity to offset readership declines in their print editions with an aggressive online strategy. From Business Week:
”According to the London-based Audit Bureau of Circulations, domestic British newspaper circulation during the six-month period from February, 2007, to July, 2007, fell 3.31% vs. a year earlier. But Web site traffic is on the upswing. Guardian Unlimited, for instance, the online portal for Britain’s The Guardian newspaper, pulled in 16 million unique users globally in May, 2007, up 10.3% from a year earlier and a solid 122% higher than four years ago.
OK! Magazine’s long, slow descent into the Dark Side of Journalism continues unhindered. Not that OK! — which pays for celebrity interviews — had a long way to go in that direction. But OK! used to be a light, bubbly read.
The pendulum swings. Enter: Britney Spears. Ever since OK! found itself inundated with press attention for recounting how Britney stained an expensive dress with chicken excess at a photo shoot, things just haven’t been as O.K. Where have all the fluffy, nutritionally-empty celebrity puff pieces of yesteryear gone?
WHAT: Premiere of Walking Into Traffic
WHO: playwright Kyle T. Wilson.
WHEN: 8 p.m.
WHERE: Unknown Theater
WHY: It tells the story of an L.A. morning radio newscaster who snaps one day — so it’s either a fun work of fiction or a premonition. Buy your tickets online and save a few dollars ($18 on line, $24 at the door).
WHAT: Opening of Video Picnic 2007, a group art show to benefit victims of Hurricane Katrina.
WHO: works by Nicole Antebi, Lara Bank, Emil Dora, Matt MacFarland, Noah Peffer & Jennifer Porter
WHEN: 8 p.m.
WHERE: Me & You Variety Candy
WHY: Proceeds benefit the Common Groun Wetlands Restoration Project in Louisiana. Oh, also be warned: it’s BYOB.
WHAT: Zorro In Hell
WHO: Richard Montoya, Herbert SigÃ¼enza, Ric Salinas, Joseph Kamal and Sharon Lockwood
WHEN: 8 p.m.
WHERE: Ricardo Montalban Theater
WHY: It’s farce. It’s funny. It’s Hispanic.
Leon Neyfakh at The Observer chronicles the growing competition between the two biggest cats in the free weekly jungle, The Village Voice and The New York Press. It hasn’t been this hyper-competitive between those two since back in the day when Taki Theodoracopulos and Sam Schulman edited the New York Press’ ”Top Drawer” section and Doug Simmons was at The Voice.
Apparently Voice editor Tony Ortega, in what can only be properly construed as an ill-received joke, ran a racy August 22nd cover in response to the media criticism the weekly has been getting over those massage parlor ads. The staff wasn’t too happy about it, but his competitor Manhattan Media CEO Tom Allon was. From the salmon-hued (and tennis-obsessed) weekly:
Pop quiz, hotshot: What’s the best part of Fashion Week? The clothes? Nah. The parties? Nope. The Models? Obvi. Thanks to NYMag.com, we’ll be able to revel in their gloriousness long after the hordes leave Bryant Park and Ms. Wintour retreats back to her Vogue ivory tower on September 12.
The Model Manual features everything you’d ever want to know about 200 of the chicas we love. Wondering with whom Bar Refaeli’s feuding? (Gisele over Leo). Need to know when Karolina Kurkova graced the cover of W? (July, 2001). Seeking a slideshow of Kate Moss’ off-the-runway antics? Yep, it’s there, too. Don’t have any questions about models? Fine with us; just look at the damn pictures.
Sorry Laurel, our afternoon just got booked.
Archivists raised an online racket when Jerry Bruckheimer Inc advertised for an unpaid intern to sort through the producer’s old files. Despite the zillions made by his movies and the qualifications* required for the position, evidently just touching greatness** should be reward enough.
*Students that are enrolled in a Masters of Library Sciences program are highly preferred.
**An understanding and appreciation for the importance of protecting the company’s image and legacy.
This last bit must be the reason the job’s still open.
Kristin Gore’s publicist must be working overtime. Gore describes her forays around town in the LAT’s My Favorite Weekend. She’s better than the usual Weekend wagsters but is a little confused about downtown LA, as she thinks R23 is sort of secret:
You’re in this warehouse wasteland in the middle of the night, and you feel like you’re in a secret sushi club and need a password to get in.
She’s also answering Variety’s Pushy Questions. Fave answer:
We would have thought Daddy was her favorite vice.
(her mom took the photo)
Newsweek’s Tony Dokoupil has more on the Theresa Duncan/Jeremy Blake story.
He doesn’t pull any punches either:
their storybook devotion to each other slowly warped into a shared madness–what is known as a folie a deux
Doukoupil did get Cary Woods to go on the record about a new project for Duncan:
The night before she killed herself, they met with “Scream” producer Cary Woods to outline a noir film–a dream project for some, but it was perhaps too much for Duncan. Her friends speculate that she chose to end her life rather than risk losing another film to forces outside her control.
Will Duncanologists take the weekend off? Not likely as the print edition has an exclusive photo of Beck and Jeremy on the beach around July 2004, taken by Theresa. Notice the timing.
When sardonic New York-based David Letterman gets together with the tempermentally, Chicago-based Oprah Winfrey, the result is unmitigated, nougaty media magic. It wasn’t always that way, though. After years of serving as the butt of some light-hearted ribbing — think: ”Oprah, Uma, Uma, Oprah” — Winfrey was quoted in Time Magazine in 2003 as saying that she would never appear on The Late Show with David Letterman because he made her feel “completely uncomfortable.” You and every other viewer, Oprah; that’s the beauty of the show.
In 2005, however, Winfrey reversed herself appeared on the Late show to face an uncharacteristically effusive Letterman. ”I can’t thank you enough,” said Letterman during the interview. ”I really can’t thank you enough. It means a great deal to me. And I’m just very happy.”
Of course he was. That appearance garnered Letterman more than three times his Nielsen average in ratings and allowed him the rarest of all pearls — a victory over his arch-nemesis, Jay Leno. From The AP (via Forbes):
”David Letterman will make his first appearance on ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ next month, another sign the talk-show titans have buried the hatchet after a rift that lasted more than a decade.
”Letterman will tape the interview, a rare appearance on someone else’s show, on Sept. 10 at Madison Square Garden in New York, Winfrey’s production company announced Wednesday.”