"a fish, a barrel, and a smoking gun"
for 3 September 1997. Updated every WEEKDAY.

What is this thing we call "Filler"?

It runs every Wednesday. It has cartoons. But what's the point?

We can't answer that, but we can tell you that sometimes Filler actually records important events of our times.

Remember the Wired IPO?

Remember the term "Neo-nerd"?

Remember the "virtual workplace"?

And, lastly, remember the brave pioneers who dared to fuse the Web and television?

Probably not. That's why we're rerunning it.

As for the others - well, if it's in the archives of history, it's in the archives of Filler.

Filler: Bringing you the world ... through stupid quotes and funny little pictures.



This week's Filler celebrates the merging of our two favorite vices, TV and the Internet - proving, once again, that two wrongs don't make a right.



NBC News people describe collaborating with Microsoft to form MSNBC, a new 24-hour news and talk channel. [Source: San Jose Mercury News, 7/9/96]

"We're reporters. We use telephones all the time. We've had to learn more e-mail. They've had to learn more telephone." [David Corvo, VP at NBC News]


"They talk about content. We talk about journalism. It's important to make sure we mean the same thing." [David Corvo, NBC News]


"I'll tell you candidly, I've been disappointed in my search within electronic journalism for enough capable colleagues to meet the challenge." [Andrew Lack, NBC News]


"I've increasingly turned to reporters who have come through the kind of training you get at a major newspaper." [Mark Harrington, MSNBC Interactive]


"Some of the younger people who aren't steeped in journalism may sometimes get cockamamie ideas about it." [Merrill Brown, MSNBC Interactive]



MTV President Judy McGrath on the new MTV channel, M2: "We're thrilled to be offering Intel's Intercast technology 24 hours a day on M2. Our audience has passionately embraced new technology, and we know it's a vital part of their everyday lives." [Intel press release, 7/8/96]



From a press release for The Netizen, TV by Wired: "Programming for those who know that the Digital Revolution is already here, and that, consequently, traditional political solutions to social and economic problems are often irrelevant." [Business Wire, 7/9/96]



"The Site is an hour-long, innovative new media and technology information and interview TV program offering comprehensive and in-depth reporting on the technology revolution's effect on the viewer at school, home, and office." [PR Newswire, 7/8/96]

At school...


At home...


At the office...



Read the following quotes by Mike Harrington of MSNBC and choose the most appropriate response. [Quotes from AP Newswire, 7/8/96]


1. "Visionaries have said, 'Oh yes, someday the computer and the television screen will come together.' Well, someday turns out to be the 15th of July."

This quote indicates that Mike Harrington is:

a) a prophet - the dream is almost realized!
b) well-versed in generating empty hype.
c) unaware of the fact that cable modems aren't widely distributed yet, thus the computer and TV screen have yet to "come together."
d) on crack.


2. "[T]his is one service with two halves, where we can send the viewers and the computer users back and forth."

When Mike refers to "send[ing] the viewers and the computer users back and forth," he's talking about:

a) sending them back and forth between the office and the living room like hyperactive dogs starved for the latest juicy morsel of news.
b) sending them back and forth between wanting to turn the TV off and wanting to turn their computers off.
c) a fascinating interplay between two different mediums, representing a revolution of thought and culture in our society ("our" meaning "that society belonging to white Americans with cash").
d) using his powers of imagination.


3. "But the real beauty of MSNBC is that, despite the months of feverish planning, the millions of dollars at stake and no end of bullish talk, no one involved knows what MSNBC will evolve into."

When I read this quote, I feel:

a) inspired by the beauty of uncertainty!
b) inspired by the beauty of a quality lie! To point out an obvious problem and say that it's a dream come true ... breathtaking!
c) glad I'm not Bill Gates for once in my life.
d) bored.



1. b   2. d   3. d  

courtesy of Polly Esther

Fish Image
The Fish

[Netscape Inbox Direct]

Barrel Image

The Barrel
[Predictions by Suck]

Gun Image
The Gun

net.moguls Link
Other Work By
Polly Esther
Fresh Fish