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Archives: December 2011

Star Trek Item Goes Boldly Down Incorrect PR Path

Never mind that West Hollywood journalist Cary Harrison, the person at the center of a recent Patch item about 2007 indie film Star Trek: Of Gods and Men, lives in an apartment once occupied by Marilyn Monroe. In the case of this article’s slant, Google could have turned out to be the reporter’s best friend.

Patch contributor James F. Mills frames Harrison’s upcoming January 9 free Internet stream of the film, and planned accompanying interviews on his radio show, as a newsworthy event. But in the article comments, long-time sci-fi journalist Michael Hinman clarifies that the movie–featuring Nichelle Nichols and Walter Koenig–is anything but “rarely seen:”

I think it’s great to see some interest put into this production, which I thought was pretty top-notch, to be honest. But I think the story is a bit misleading to suggest that the only way you can see this film is at a Star Trek convention, or through this gentleman’s website.

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WLTW Opens Big Lead Over WCBS-FM in December Ratings

WLTW/Lite FM keeps a tight grip on number one in the overall Arbitron PPM ratings. WLTW increased its lead over perennial number two WCBS-FM in December. WLTW edged WCBS-FM by just .3 in November, but WLTW had a 8.2 this month, gaining a 2.3 advantage over CBS-FM.  

Clear Channel’s WHTZ/Z100 maintains number three with a 5.1 for the second straight month. WKTU slipped from 5.0 to 4.8, while sister station WAXQ also lost .2 to 4.1.

CBS’ WWFS/Fresh 102.7 saw gains, jumping .3 to 3.9.

Tropical station WSKQ had a minimal improvement to 3.9.

Cumulus’ WABC had .2 increase to 3.7.

WINS saw a slight drop to 3.4, while WCBS-AM lost .2 to 2.8.

FM Newser 101.9/WEMP had no gains from the previous rating survey, holding steady at .6.

More ratings highlights after the jump.

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GQ Adds Reporter to its Political Coverage

GQ has added Marin Cogan as a Contributor. Cogan was most recently with Politico, and prior to that she was an Assistant Editor at The New Republic.

At GQ Cogan will cover politics for the magazine and its new blog, “Death Race 2012.” The blog, which launches January 3, will cover the upcoming presidential election.

Jared Kushner Will Call Your Bluff

On Wednesday we heard the good news that the New York Observer was expecting its first ever profit this year. We gave some love to Jared Kushner and Elizabeth Spiers for making that possible, but an anonymous rival didn’t believe that the Observer was in the black.

In the anon’s own weird way, he challenged the validity of the Observer’s report by stating that he would “eat his own hat” if the paper was indeed profitable. When Kushner heard about this, he decided to call the challenger’s bluff. According to the New York Post, Kushner said that if the anon would identify himself and sign a non-disclosure agreement, he could look at the paper’s books himself.

Of course the rival declined. Lesson learned? Never play poker with Kushner.

Ringing in 2012 with Some New Year’s Resolutions

Countdown is on before 2012 arrives. But before we say so long to 2011, there’s just enough time to gather some new year’s resolutions. Several notable personalities provide their resolutions for 2012.

WNYW/Channel5 anchor Ernie Anastos:

I’ve always looked forward to starting a new year with a renewed sense of purpose.  

One of my personal resolutions for 2012 is to bring more positive and uplifting stories to the media by highlighting the good things happening in our world. We need it. Viewers have always been asking for it, which is why I hosted my first TV special on Fox 5, “Positively Ernie.” Now, I’m hoping to turn it into a regular weekly show to help make a difference. My wish is for good news for the new year! 
WNBC/Channel 4 sports anchor Bruce Beck:

  • I would like to lose 10 pounds to get down to old playing weight.
  • I would like not to choke on the 18th hole in the club championship.
  • I would like to cover a New York team winning a world title in all four major sports in 2012.

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FishbowlNY Newsstand: Your Morning at a Glance

A Coming-Out Story for the Ages

A noteworthy series of essays at, grouped under the heading “Pariah Personals” and inspired by the film Pariah, draws to a close today with an entry from Prumsodun Ok (pictured). The Cambodian-born Long Beach resident is an artist, 2011 TED Fellow and executive editor of VoiceWaves, a youth-focused journalism project of New American Media.

Ok details a furious argument with his sister, which led him to pick up the phone, call his 80ish dad in Cambodia and finally come out. All seemed to work out fine, but later, Ok discovered the dangers of waiting until that late in someone’s life to make such a declaration:

At this time, a reporter from the LA Times was interviewing me (for a story that never ran). She wanted to speak with my father. We met at the dance studio where I was teaching. After questions about my father’s life, she asks me, “So what does your father think about your being gay?”
“Pa, she wants to know how you feel about my being gay.”
“You’re gay?”

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Roger Ebert Blames Theaters for Poor 2011 Box Office Showing

Hollywood box office numbers are down significantly from 2010. Movie attendance is at its lowest rate in 16 years. Piracy and file-sharing seems to be getting plenty of blame. But Roger Ebert isn’t buying it. Nor is he buying this Fishie’s contention that a glut of crap movies is at fault. On his blog, Ebert argues that while 2011 lacked an Avatar to boost box office numbers, the theater experience is to blame for Hollywood’s poor showing. Which is interesting, because the spate of 3-D movies that came out this year were supposed to be about improving the theater-going experience–providing something viewers couldn’t have at home.

But Ebert says 3-D ticket prices are gouging audiences. That, combined with concession gouging, and inconsiderate idiots with cell phones in the theaters are keeping people home. But all that could be overcome, Ebert argues, if theaters just took a chance on the American viewing audience and started screening decent films.

Writes Ebert:

Box-office tracking shows that the bright spot in 2011 was the performance of indie, foreign or documentary films. On many weekends, one or more of those titles captures first-place in per-screen average receipts. Yet most moviegoers outside large urban centers can’t find those titles in their local gigantiplex. Instead, all the shopping center compounds seem to be showing the same few overhyped disappointments. Those films open with big ad campaigns, play a couple of weeks, and disappear.

The myth that small-town moviegoers don’t like “art movies” is undercut by Netflix’s viewing results; the third most popular movie on Dec. 28 on Netflix was “Certified Copy,” by the Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami. You’ve heard of him? In fourth place–French director Alain Corneau’s “Love Crime.” In fifth, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”–but the subtitled Swedish version.

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Sam Zell May Not Get Tribune Co. Bankruptcy Payout After All

Tribune Company’s protracted bankruptcy isn’t going to be resolved anytime soon. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Carey said in a ruling yesterday that he wouldn’t hold hearings to end the case until May at the earliest. Some apparent good news, however, did come out of Carey’s ruling yesterday.

From the LA Times:

In his order, Carey reversed part of a ruling he made in October that seemed to give an advantage to a deeply subordinated class of note holders known as the Phones.

At the time, Carey indicated that the Phones class should be able to recover at least part of a claim with a face value of $1.2 billion, getting its share from money that would otherwise go to Aurelius and other junior creditors.

That opened the door to a parallel demand from Tribune Chairman Sam Zell, whose affiliate owns a similar note. It was Zell who acquired the company in a highly leveraged buyout in December 2007, a deal that landed it in bankruptcy a year later.

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Cenk Uygur Wins TYT Fantasy Football League–Pretty Happy About It

The Young Turks just posted some funny behind-the-scenes footage of Cenk Uygur celebrating victory over his fantasy football league. Those of you who have never spent days agonizing over whether Mike Shanahan is going to inexplicably bench Roy Helu for the first three quarters of a meaningless game against the Miami Dolphins, despite not giving a flying crap about the Redskins, can never understand Uygur’s joy.