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Posts Tagged ‘Tina Brown’

Kevin Sessums: From Food Stamps to FourTwoNine

One great advantage of profiling a wordsmith like Kevin Sessums, formerly among Tina Brown‘s marquee writers at Vanity Fair, is that he can be counted on to deliver marquee quotes.

FourTwoNineCover

Here for example is how he describes, to New York Times reporter Laura M. Holson, what he deems to be a signature Brown talent. Sampled after Sessums made an infamous remark about a Roseanne Barr VF cover in the post-Brown era:

He recalled being seated at a booth at the Royalton Hotel soon after when Ms. Brown stopped by. “‘I heard what you said about that cover!’” Mr. Sessums said she told him. “‘Oh! You are the Oscar Wilde of New York!’,” Mr. Sessums nodded at her. “That is her way of complimenting me and denigrating me at the same time,” he said. “She was really good at that.”

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Is Tina Brown’s Favorite Shakespeare Quote a Nudge-Nudge, Wink-Wink?

In the bios, he is known as Sir Harold. But more informally in NYC, London and elsewhere,  Tina Brown‘s husband Harold Evans is quite often referred to or tagged as “Harry.”

Which got us wondering today about the favorite Shakespeare quote provided to blogger Bill Lucey by the head of Tina Brown Live Media, for his fun item tied to the 450th anniversary of The Bard’s birthday. He asked journalists to share their favorite line of stage dialogue, and, well… You be the second judge:

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Toby Young Ponders Tina Brown’s ‘Galactic Chutzpah’

TheSpectatorLogoSome of the contextualizing is questionable. But overall, Toby Young‘s The Spectator essay about the money-losing media trail trodden by Tina Brown and his companion commentary for The Daily Telegraph are thrillingly thought-provoking.

From The Spectator piece:

Take the case of Tina Brown, a New Yorker whose business ventures have lost far more than L’Wren Scott’s ever did, but who is completely inured to these setbacks because of her posh English upbringing… You won’t find Tina retiring to a darkened room with a bottle of whiskey and a revolver. On the contrary, she’s just signed a contract with Doubleday to write her memoirs — the appropriately titled Media Beast. Failure is just another career opportunity for her, which has always been the British way. As Winston Churchill said, ‘Success is going from one failure to the next with no loss of enthusiasm.’

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Tina Brown on Newsweek: ‘I’m so Glad I’m Not the Editor’

Tina Brown was routinely criticized during her time as Newsweek’s editor, so it’s not surprising to hear that she’s happy she doesn’t have to deal with the magazine’s Bitcoin story fiasco.

In an interview with Bloomberg Television, Brown was asked what would happen if Newsweek’s story was proven wrong. “That would be rough,” replied Brown. “All I can think of is I’m so glad I’m not the editor.”

Brown also commented on the challenges Newsweek faces, which have been echoed by many:

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Former AOL Editor Joins Tina Brown’s Company

Cyndi Stivers, who was ousted as AOL’s editor-in-chief after only eight months on the job, has joined Tina Brown Live Media, her event company.

The New York Post reports that at Tina Brown Live Media, Stivers will oversee digital strategy.

No doubt Stivers will have her hands full in the next few months, as Brown’s big event, the Women in The World Summit, is set for April.

Tina Brown Doesn’t Like Pot

Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 9.59.01 AMEarlier this morning, Tina Brown tweeted a link to David Brooks’ New York Times piece declaring that smoking weed is bad. The article rehashes (pun totally intended, bruh!) the same old anti-pot arguments and ignores the fact that imprisoning people for smoking weed is — at the very least — ridiculous.

Brown thought Brooks’ article was “too polite,” so she added her own take on pot:

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‘Media Person of The Year’ Finalists Unveiled

It’s almost the end of the year, and you know what that means: Lots of “best of/worst of” lists and many, many awards. One honor that typically grabs the attention of the media centric is I Want Media’s annual Media Person of The Year contest, which celebrates “2013′s most memorable figure — for good or ill — in the media industry.”

I Want Media has just opened up voting, so get to it. The polls will close Sunday, December 8, and the winner will be announced the next day. After you’re done logging your thoughts for I Want Media, we suggest you start considering who should win FishbowlNY’s Best Award Award. Voting for that is always close.

Below are the finalists for Media Person of The Year.

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Tina Brown Learns to Keep Her Opinions About War to Herself

Tina Brown recently learned the hard way that when speaking to veterans of the armed forces, it’s wise to just keep your opinions about war to yourself. Brown had just attended a screening of Lone Survivor, a film about Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell, who (spoiler!) was the only survivor after a mission in Afghanistan went wrong. As NPR reports, a pivotal part of the movie is when Luttrell and his team decide to let a group of goat herders go. In the end, those same goat herders alert Taliban forces, who attack and murder everyone aside from Luttrell.

Brown, being the inquisitive type, approached Luttrell after the screening, and made the mistake of offering up her opinion:

I actually talked to [Luttrell] after a screener in an interview, and I asked him, you know, how does he feel today about that decision to let the goat herds go, which I said at the time, was probably the right moral decision to do. And he exploded. He said he really resented that it was ‘the right thing to do.’ He said, ‘How do you know what was the right thing to do? Nobody but us who was on that mountainside, in that conflict, in that war zone, knows what was the right thing to do.’

We have the feeling that from now on, Brown will withhold commenting on veterans’ deeply personal, and often quite traumatic, experiences.

Hopefully.

Tina Brown is Grumpy

Tina Brown thinks magazines are lame. The Hindustan Times reports that during a festival in India, Brown was asked about the state of journalism, and the former Newsweek/Daily Beast editor admitted that she doesn’t read magazines anymore. “The habit has gone,” Brown explained, which is sort of a dramatic way of putting it.

Brown went on to say that the digital revolution is ruining pretty much everything. “The digital explosion has been so explosive, there isn’t a single place where the digital thing is a profit thing,” noted Brown. “The disruption hasn’t brought a business model.” While we agree that explosions are often explosive, we don’t agree that there’s no positives to digital journalism.

As if that wasn’t enough, Brown added that she doesn’t even read much nowadays. “I think you can have more satisfaction from live conversations,” she said. Why the dour outlook? Brown said news sites are too often blurring editorial with advertising. “Journalists have not been aggressive enough about fighting back; it’s a very, very pathetic moment in journalism.”

With that, Brown blew a handful of magic dust into the sky, laughed maniacally, and disappeared into thin air.

The Daily Beast to Continue Publishing

The Daily Beast lives on. According to well, The Daily Beast, the site will continue publishing, despite many rumors to the contrary. “The Daily Beast is not for sale and is not closing,” wrote Rhona Murphy, interim CEO of The Daily Beast, in a memo to staffers. “IAC has approved in concept the operating budget for 2014.”

When the news broke that Tina Brown was departing the site, many people — including us — thought that the Daily Beast might be sold or shut down. However, things are apparently all good. And there were many statements to remind us of that.

Here’s one from managing director Deidre Depke: “The Daily Beast continues to grow at a robust rate and we are committed to bringing the business into a new era of strength and stability.” And another from John Avlon, The Daily Beast’s executive editor: “Our great team of writers and reporters keeps The Daily Beast on the cutting edge of digital news, delivering print quality at web speed.”

However, our favorite by far was from Barry Diller, who couldn’t help but stick another fork in Newsweek during his praise of The Daily Beast:

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