Restaurants in New York City have been tweeting their Sunday brunch offerings, not their structural damages reports. Mayor Michael Bloomberg is declaring "the worst" to be over. A few city streets were flooded, but it wasn't that bad, and the vast majority of people who live along Irene's blustery path up and down the East Coast have survived. How can this be?
Cuil (pronounced "kewl") is a brand new website that exists to give lazy tech journalists something to write about. It's also a search engine—one launched by former Google employees—though like ten seconds of playing around quickly demonstrated that it is a barely functioning search engine. Seriously, it doesn't work. Though you wouldn't know that from reading today's featured Times story on how it's a Google-killer! Sigh. [Valleywag]
Steve Jobs announced something today, about his fancy Apple phones that turn you into an incorrigible asshole. He has new ones, and they're cheaper, and faster. All good news, right? Too bad you won't be able to get one, if you have a job. Because only the people willing to give up their lives and camp out before the release will get the first batch! The Apple Stores will not be as quiet as they were when Choire and Neel stopped by today. Why? Because Steve Jobs hates you (and because it's HOT).
That is what I have been wondering about the hype surrounding founding editor of n+1 (the most important literary journal of our time) and his debut novel, All the Sad Young Literary Men. Last night at McNally Robinson, while waiting for his reading to begin, I gazed over his head and across the street into the PinkyOtto boutique, glaring at their evil shopgirl. A strict-looking, skinny brunette in the crowd made a big show of fanning her face: "He's hot!" she stage-whispered to her girlfriend, cocking her head towards the author. "What?" the friend asked. "He's so hot!" she repeated, louder this time. She looked like she hadn't eaten in days.
In this week's Rolling Stone profile, Guy Lawson surveys the damage of the JT Leroy implosion, described as the "first complete recounting [Laura Albert] has ever offered of the decade-long transformation of an HIV-positive, transgender street kid named Terminator into the celebrated fiction writer Jeremiah 'Terminator' Leroy."
Media company Virtual Worlds Management, which is hosting the Virtual World Conference next week in San Jose, boasts that $1 billion was invested in virtual worlds over the past year. Well, as Leigh Alexander of Worlds in Motion points out, this figure results from skilled sleight of hand. Here's how the market really breaks down.
Why is the New York Times tripping over itself to laud IBM for its "nimbleness"? Clearly visible in the accompanying chart but not mentioned in the article, IBM's total revenue and service-sector growth have been stagnant over the same period. Moreover, the transition to services has been underway for a decade, if not longer. Surely IBM's still-substantial print advertising budget and propensity for taking out full-page newspaper ads has nothing to do with the article's velvet-glove treatment of Big Blue. But how else to explain the article's un-Timesian enthusiasm over such modest change?
When FR.OG arrived on Spring Street back in April, Didier Virot's glittery French fusion restaurant failed to impress. We gently panned it. Eater immediately placed it on its Deathwatch. But FR.OG is still around and is even enjoying a glut of publicity. In the last two weeks alone, FR.OG has been visited by an ambivalent Times critic Frank Bruni, a mooning Postie Steve Cuozzo and an intoxicated Johnny Miles of the Times style-land. It could be the food? But its Iago-like PR company, Hall PR, is happy to take the credit.
The World Economic Forum is an elite, invitation-only event in Davos, Switzerland, where the most powerful people in the universe gather to talk about how they're going to carve up the world in the coming year. This year, the invitees included A-list bloggers Arianna Huffington and John Battelle So where's all the Davos coverage? Locked up in the bloggers' feverish brains, since most events at Davos are off the record. Battelle is left stammering: "You'll have to trust me that the insights, conversations, and information I gathered will certainly inform the musings I post here. I just can't be specific to the who, what, and where." Well, that leaves when, why, and how, at least. Could this be a weird kind of reverse-psychology buzz-generating trick by the Davos organizers?