FishbowlDC TVNewser TVSpy LostRemote AgencySpy PRNewser GalleyCat SocialTimes

Archives: December 2008

Good-Bye to All That 2008 Stuff!

We were going to do a list of our top five favorite vids from this year except honestly we are list-exhausted. So instead we’re just posting our very favorite, which never fails, no matter how often we watch it, to make us laugh. Other than that we’d like to remind you for the last time this year that we have job boards (what better way to start the new year than with a job!) but also to wish you all a happy and safe and better New Year. See you in 2009.

Mediabistro Course

Middle Grade Novel Writing

Middle Grade Novel WritingStarting January 15, work with a literary agent to write your middle-grade novel! In this course, you'll learn how to develop strong characters, write compelling dialogue, master the art of revision, and market your work to publishing houses and agents. Register now!

Our Final List Round-Up of 2008!

More lists! Maybe itemizing things makes the terrible year media we just suffered easier to bear. Also it’s a fun way to fill the time between now and opening the champagne. Anyway, here’s the final installment:

FishbowlNY’s Top Five Most Popular Posts in 2008

What’s the New Year without a little time spent trumpeting one’s own excellence? Without further ado, the 5 most popular posts on FishbowlNY during the past year.

5. Black Sunday on Wall St.? Someone Who Knows What They’re Talking About Explains it to Us
4. How To Get On Cash Cab
3. Playgirl Going All-Web
2. Covering Barack: The New Yorker Vets the President-Elect
1. Imus: If I Had Made The Jesse Jackson Comparison, I’d Be Talking To Sharpton

Village Voice Laying Off Longtime Voice of Nat Hentoff

nat-704783.jpgNo one is safe! Former Voiceer Tricia Romano reports over at Pop & Politics that the Village Voice has laid-off long-time columnist Nat Hentoff who’s been at the paper since 1958 writing mainly about Jazz but more recently about civil liberties.

Also on the way out is fashion writer, Lynn Yaeger, a 30 year veteran of the paper, and staff writer Chloe Hilliard.

Hentoff spoke to the Times about his dismissal saying: “I’m 83 and a half. You’d think they’d have let me go silently…Fortunately, I’ve never been more productive. With all due immodesty, I think it doesn’t help to lose me because people have told me they read the Voice not only for me, but certainly for me.” Fortunately for those people Hentoff will still be writing a weekly column for the United Media syndicate and contributing pieces to The Wall Street Journal.

Schwarzenegger’s NYE ‘Friday News Dump’

_42386377_afp203x200arnie.jpgHave you heard the news?

Breaking, from the LA Times:

A sales-tax increase, hike in vehicle registration fees, reduction of state workforce and cuts to state and community colleges are part of the governor’s plan to close a $41.6-billion deficit.

On New Year’s Eve? A big fat plan to cut spending for the disabled? Increase alcohol tax? Slash child-tax credits? Reduce staff? Cut spending for schools? All while the governor is on a vaca with his family in Idaho?!

We asked LAT’s Evan Halper if this is the ultimate example of a ‘Friday news dump’?

His response? “Pretty much.”

2008: The Stranger Than Fiction News Year

Wow. This was quite a year, no? Twelve months ago the media world was trying to figure out the best place to celebrate New Years in Iowa. Twelve months ago! One wonders whether this year would be best measured in dog years of some sort. But wait there’s still 12 more hours to go! And if we’ve learned anything this year it’s that a lot of headlines can happen in 12 hours. Anyway, there are plenty end-of-year lists floating around at the moment — be they best media moments, worst, blunders, predictions, etc. But after watching Blago make a reappearance yesterday amidst an otherwise distressing news day (and really in terms of entertaining headlines this guy is the best thing to come along since Sarah Palin except arguably better since there is absolutely no chance of his ever reaching the White House) it occurred to us there were a lot news stories this year that made us an expert on something we never thought we’d need to know about. A lot!

Like, for example, the difference between a caucus and primary, and which one happens in what state when, or, say, Superdelegates! Or Alaskan politics (not to mention wolf-hunting), or the difference between a investment bank and a bank holding company. Or the fact that no one was actually in charge on Wall St. Also, Presidential puppies! And then there’s all those names! Ashley Dupree (and her singing career!), the Palin family von Track (and Tripp!), and more recently Made-off, and Bluh-GOY-uh-vich. Phew, you couldn’t make this stuff up. Favorites? Weigh in on your choice below.

What Was Your Favorite Unlikely News Story of 2008
( surveys)

The RNC, the Magic Negro and the LA Times

Drive-By_Media_Misreporting_of__Barack_the_Magic_Negro__Song.Par.4584.ImageFile.jpg
In March, David Ehrenstein penned a piece in the LA Times titled “Obama the ‘Magic Negro’”. The term ‘Magic Negro’ comes from film criticism about the stock character commonly played by say Morgan Freeman. Wikipedia explains the phrase as ‘a supporting, often mystical stock character in fiction who, by use of special insight or powers, helps the white protagonist get out of trouble.’

It’s like the hooker with a heart of gold or the nun with no heart at all. A movie cliche. Like when someone coughs – they’re dying. Or a woman throws up – she’s pregnant.

Anyway, Ehrenstein’s piece was not about Barack Obama, it was about the image of the Magic Negro and what the public has projected on to him.

Enter, right-wing ‘knowhard’ Rush Limbaugh and ‘satirist’ Paul Shanklin. Shanklin wrote a spoof to the tune of “Puff the Magic Dragon”. Titled,”Barack the Magic Negro.” With the lyrics sang by an Al Sharpton impersonator,”Barack the magic negro lives in DC. The LA Times they called him that because he’s not authentic like me. The guy from the LA paper said he made guilty whites feel good…” and “Don’t vote the Magic Negro in…”

So, who cares? No one. But then Chip Saltsman, former Mike Huckabee campaign staffer (snicker) wants to be RNC chair, so what better to send out to all his associates for Christmas than a copy of “Barack the Magic Negro”.

Read more

How Much Do People Make Blogging?

DarrenRowse.jpgThere’s some debate about when blogging is going to be considered ‘writing’. We would argue that blogging is way more than writing. It’s little tech – you have to know how to at least spell html. It’s a little graphic design. It’s a little editing. It’s a little photography. You become your own media microcosm.

Anyway, over at ProBlogger, Darren Rowse has his annual poll to find out how much bloggers make blogging. The numbers are shocking. Apparently bloggers actually make money – like 9% of those that responded claim to make over $20,000 a month (we’ll assume that’s the American dollar).

Of course, the vast majority don’t make nearly anything blogging. But we were talking about what shocked us.

He also has been kind enough to post the same poll from 2006 and 2007. Nifty.

LA Weekly Answers Mayor V

mayorv222.jpgAs we reported yesterday, after LA Weekly wrote a critical article about Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in September, and then he defended himself with the LA Daily News last week.

Basically, the Weekly reported that Villaraigosa only does city business (according to his schedule) with 11% of his time. So Villaraigosa said that it wasn’t true because the Weekly only got his public calendar. Whole story is here.

Jill Stewart sent FBLA this email:

The question for us is, wtf is Antonio saying, exactly, in his slam on us?

Is Antonio saying that he has a second set of books that detail his real schedule and that prove he does actual city business? That would be news to us, and a big ethical breach by him if true, for withholding it from us. And that would be a really juicy new story.

More likely, and the only other possibility, is that the mayor lied when he said: “… they were upset because we only gave them my public calendar. They didn’t get to see what I was doing privately, with meetings here (at City Hall) or in other places.”

Nuh uh Tony. Never happened.

Read more

EEE!! New Watchmen Featurette!

Watchmen Exclusive

And yes there is new footage that we haven’t seen before and YES just a little over 90 days until it’s released.

We were at ComicCon this year, so read about the Watchmen panel or lawsuit here.

NEXT PAGE >>