for 18 September 1996. Updated every WEDNESDAY.

 
 

WHERE IS THE "CONTENT CAPITAL"?

The city by the bay, or the city where you pay to play? You make the call!
[Source: AP Newswire, 8/26/96]

 
 

Cynthia Allen, of NYU's Center for Digital Multimedia: "New York is now the content capital in new media." Andrew Wanliss-Orlebar of Total New York: "[This] revolution can't happen in the middle of nowhere. It has to happen where there's a creative explosion, in a cultural hodgepodge like New York."

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"On a recent weekday night, Wanliss-Orlebar is sitting with Bowe and about 15 others... in Manhattan's Little Italy. The group of twenty-somethings originally met online and now gather here regularly over beers and cigarettes to discuss the coolest Internet shareware, classic literature, rock music, and avant-garde art."

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"One bespectacled member of the group animatedly expounds on the eventuality of cyber prophets. He talks of a Web economy in which surfers are charged hundredths of a cent per click and advertisers can figure a way to 'securely measure your hits.'"

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"Having grown up on Long Island, she [Allison Fishman, marketing director at Earthweb] adds, 'New York was the only place I was going to go after college. I wanted to go where the energy is, where the content is being developed. That's New York, not Silicon Valley.'"

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THE NEXT ANNA NICOLE SMITH?

25-year-old Brooke Gilbert, commenting on caviar's comeback: "I like salty things. And I like it because it is expensive."
[Wall Street Journal, 9/6/96]

 

SALTY + EXPENSIVE?

Does this chart lend structure to a chaotic universe? Probably not.

 

[]

 
 

 

AS THE WORLD (TM) TURNS...

On This Great Consumer Planet, Each Day...

 

Another Gimmick Fails...
Mabel Pierce, 69, commenting on the new billboards that give off smells, installed in bus shelters in London: "I'm trying not to breathe. It smells like my husband's armpits."
[Newsweek, 9/9/96]

Another Conference Sails...
"Cultivating the Netconomy: The Fourth Annual Bionomics Conference" featuring such topics as "The Information Ecosystem," "Modeling the Netconomy," "Microbionomics: Where Form Fits Function," and "Simulation Workshop."
[The Bionomics Institute, 9/96]

Another Scheme Is Doomed...
Chuck Bachrach, of the Rubin Postaer ad agency, in response to CBS's request that Letterman advertisers to sacrifice their 30-second spots so the network can experiment with a commercial-free 60-minute version of the show: "I haven't got a clue to what CBS is doing. My advertisers have products to sell - they're not philanthropists."
[Variety, 8/30/96]

Another Posture Is Assumed...
Bob Costas of NBC Sports, in a letter to the editor at Entertainment Weekly: "A recent item referred to my 'thinly veiled contempt' for NBC tennis commentator Bud Collins. If, in deadpanning my responses to him, I left anyone with that impression, it could scarcely be less accurate. I have enormous regard for Bud. He is an intelligent, capable, accomplished, and most importantly, warmhearted guy. I consider him a friend."
[Entertainment Weekly, 9/6/96]

 

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Another One Ducks...
French soccer star Eric Cantona's response to reporters after an alleged "kung-fu" attack on a soccer fan: "When seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think that sardines will be thrown into the sea."
[Reuters, 9/3/96]

Another One Sucks...
Of Patricia Mendoza, who was arrested at a July 2 food fair in Chicago: "A police spokesman said she and her husband used expressions such as 'you suck' as well as words that rhyme with 'suck.'"
[Washington Times, 8/27/96]

IS KATZ ON CRACK?*

Or are you?*
You make the call!
[Source: Netizen, 9/3 - 9/17]
* = It's a metaphor! Get it?

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1. "Some time deep in the coming millennium, long after the culture wars now raging in America have fizzled, the rapper Tupac Shakur will be remembered as one of the seminal figures in the evolution of American popular culture and new media.... [T]here's little doubt, judging by his life and times, that Tupac Shakur will prove as historic a figure in the annals of modern media as Dan Rather, or Barbara Walters, or Walter Cronkite."

Choose your response:

a) Abso-fucking-lutely right on, boyeee! Tupac ruled!
b) Old media celebrates the same old "important" media figures, so new media must embrace everyone else. So couterintuitive, it just might work.
c) Who is Tupac Shakur?
d) Thinking about the raging culture wars makes me want to get high. Maybe Katz can hook me up...

 

2. "Mainstream journalists hate interactivity more than any other new media idea because it not only diminishes their power, it exposes them to all sorts of raucous criticism and response, varying from intelligent to belligerent to dumb."

a) He's right! All those elitist writers are just worried that interactivity will nullify their hoity-toity preoccupation with facts, or put them into the firing range of a well-placed "I know you are but what am I?"
b) Preposterous - his logic is utterly flawed! I'd like to fuck him up! Stupid dummy.
c) He'd better hope interactivity is the next big thing, because he's burning more bridges than Don Rickles... whom I just read an interesting piece about in The New York Times Magazine...
d) Dumb... numb. Mmm. Crack. Katz!!

 

3. "Interactivity isn't a new gimmick for the new media, but a possible salvation for the old. The problem is that before many journalists will believe in this, they'll have to actually talk to their readers, and that would be the biggest miracle of all."

a) No shit! Those writer guys are so damn elitist - they think they know everything, and they don't care about the people who read their stuff at all, and it's, like, totally impossible that they'd ever really listen to what anyone else had to say. Jerks.
b) Thanks to new media, crackheads are off the streets and in real jobs, writing real articles and stuff!
c) I'll mourn the death of old media when I see its obituary in The New York Times.
d) It would be a big miracle if Katz showed up with some crack right now.

 

4. "TV also mitigates against the rise of Superpundits, giving viewers too many choices for us all to end up with the same view."

a) Yep, 'cause the more channels we get, the less we'll agree.
b) If Superpundits have super powers like Superman, maybe we should let them decide anyway.
c) If Katz came into view, I wouldn't know whether to insult him or just administer a swift beatdown and call it a day.
d) Super. Crackatz!!!

 

5. "The hemorrhaging survivors of the Punditocracy are panicked. They are not going gracefully. They accuse you of being civically dumb, apathetic, disinterested, and ignorant... You've voted with your channel switchers, modems, keyboards, and time. And, in a landslide, you've driven the pundits from their perches, in perhaps the most interesting and meaningful election held this year."

a) Yeah, we voted with our appliances and kicked out those old guys on their perches and stuff! We're not some kind of civic dummies like they think we are!
b) Come to think of it, last time I watched 20/20, Barbara Walters did look kind of panicked... but I didn't know she was bleeding out!
c) Time to change the channel.
d) I want to do crack with Katz again tonight, just like I did last night.

 

[]

Score each question as follows:

a = You and Katz are on crack.
b = You are on crack.
c = Katz is on crack.
d = You and Katz do crack together.

 
 

 

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