Although Harvey Levin may not have yet launched satellite arm TMZ DC, he was at the National Press Club today as the organization’s luncheon keynote speaker. On the dais, Levin was joined by reporters from AP, the LA Times, the Wall Street Journal and more.
Levin decided to change up what he had planned on speaking about, because of an earlier speech today to “depressed” media students at George Washington University. He noted that there had been a debate among professors as to whether Levin should even be invited to the college:
“It’s not the subject matter that’s covered, it’s how it’s covered. TMZ is a news operation that uses the same skills and standards that I used as a working journalist at various news operations… I want to talk about the delivery system. Because that’s what’s relevant, that’s what’s important.”
“I do think that the delivery system in media generally right now is stale and that there is a good chance that a lot of people here will be put out of work if the people who run this delivery system don’t change it and don’t change it quickly. But I think it can be changed.”
Levin pointed out that not all stories get rushed onto the TMZ website. An item today for example about the crafty attempts of an NBC producer to land a Casey Anthony interview was tipped last Tuesday but then held until the gang at Crescent Heights and Sunset could get some confirmation from Anthony’s attorney.
Levin also claimed TMZ had the Michael Phelps-bong story three months before it broke, but that he passed because it felt like a set-up. However, he posted a picture of the infamous party scene in his office, waiting for the day another outlet decided to publish. Levin also spoke very candidly about TMZ’s willingness to pay for worthy video and photo materials.
[To watch an archived online recording of today's Levin speech, click here]