I'm usually loathe to involve this blog in silly blogosphere crap like this, but...
Above, witness Jimmy Kimmel, a moderately funny and very affable television host, sticking it to the alarmingly self-satisfied editor of Gawker. At issue is whether Gawker's celebrity coverage is appropriate, particularly the "Gawker Stalker," wherein "citizen journalists" tell Gawker exactly where and when they saw celebrities.
Here's the deal from my perspective: being a blogger is great. You can be irreverent, cute, whatever. But at some point, you have to take responsibility for something.
But Kimmel asks a pertinent question: "I know you're an editor, what exactly do you edit from this website?"
He's not exactly F. Lee Bailey when it comes to grueling cross-examinations, but he gets the point across.
She states, "Do you read Us Weekly and expect that everything in it is true?"
Well, I don't read Us Weekly, but even entertainment journalists check their facts and take responsibility for what they publish. That kind of "well, their ethics are questionable too!" stuff is horrible.
Kimmel hits her hard, I think, when he says to her, "I just want you to think about your life."
Then she brings up a second justification: "Honestly, I think there's a shifting definition of what is public and what is private space, for everyone, not just celebrities. No one has the reasonable expectation of being able to walk down the street and not have what they're doing be noticed by someone."
This, of course, is a specious legal argument, and Kimmel hits back on moral grounds:
"But that is just a terrible thing, though, isn't it?"
"Is it though? I think it's good that we're not putting people up on a pedastal any more..."
Does she seriously believe that she's not putting celebrities up on a pedestal? On a site called GAWKER?!
Putting celebrities down is just another kind of putting them on a pedestal. If she thinks she's doing something different from Us Weekly or even the Hollwood PR machine press of days gone by, she's kidding herself.
Well, that's not entirely true... there is one difference between the old and new celebrity media. The new celebrity media is just as worshipful of celebrity -- but it's dramatically meaner. Sometimes in the name of "snark," or "cattiness," but often just in the name of meanness.
I've never been a huge fan of Kimmel's comedy, but I think he runs a solid TV show and has had a very interesting career. Through that career, the one thing that has made him succesful above all else is his earnestness. Kimmel may be broad or gross or stupid or he may be insightful or edgy or funny, but he really seems to care about being himself and representing himself honestly. That gets him a long way, here, and is I think what made the clip so devastating, despite Kimmel's modest shortcomings as a debater.
The bottom line: this kind of snarky psuedo-journalism may be legal and it may be profitable, but that doesn't make it good or right.
We announce the winners of the High Five Contest, a conversation which spins out of control.
Jordan discuss beer koozies. He's noticed people bringing them to bars. What's that all about?
Porn in the Woods
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Our theme music: "Love You" by The Free Design, courtesy of The Free Design and Light in the Attic Records
The Sound of Young America and Jordan Jesse GO! are supported in part by Project Breakout!
Pursuant to discussion of the Wii on Jordan, Jesse GO!, a wonderful video from Elephant Larry.
Oh Word presents Cam'ron's Rhyme Book. Great, hilarious work.
They're definitely keeping computers 'putin.
Yuval Taylor is the co-author of "Faking It: The Quest for Authenticity in Popular Music." We discuss what Taylor and his co-author Hugh Barker see as the three forms of musical authenticity: cultural, personal and representational.
We discuss (and hear music from) artists including Leadbelly, Nirvana, Neil Young, Woodie Guthrie, the Rolling Stones, Jimmie Rodgers, Donna Summer, Billy Joel and even Jennifer Lopez.
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Our intersititial music is provided by DJW
The Sound of Young America is underwritten in part by Project Breakout
We'll meet at the Bourgeois Pig on Franklin at 8PM, then we'll catch the 9:30 PM show at the UCBT next door -- the Match Game, featuring our podcast pal Jimmy Pardo and friends. Past match games I've attended have included former TSOYA guests like Bob Odenkirk, Paul F. Tompkins, Patton Oswalt, Chris Hardwick and more.
The Match Game will sell out, so please make reservations now (tickets are a mere $8). Make sure you're making them for Friday night, make sure you confirm them (they'll send you an email with a link), and make sure you let me know you're coming by emailing me your reservation confirmation at jesse at maximumfun.org. I'm going to try talking the theater into saving us some seats so we don't have to wait so long in line.
ALSO! If you're in New York, Elizabeth and Zach are trying to organize an NYC meetup. Click here for more info on that, and throw in your two cents. I've met several of the folks who've said they're going, and they're nice and not weird!
Do you use Last.fm? It's a neat service that tracks what you listen to on your computer, then tells you what else you might like, keeps stats, and other stuff.
Listener and message board poster Mic Dee has started a maximumfun.org last.fm group. Sign up and we can track what we listen to, collectively, including podcasts and music.
I think it's a great idea. So do it.
The Aqua Teen Hunger Force film, "Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Moviefilm for Theaters" is almost in here, and while you wait, rapt, wondering how they're going to convince anyone to sit through the equivalent of seven episodes in a row...
WHY NOT PLAY WITH AMAZING PRIZES?
To quote from the kind PR folks stoking the fires of internet buzz:
We'd love it if you could give away this giftbag for the upcoming movie that includes a meatwad beachball, a meatwad stress relief ball, meatwad socks, an ATHF t-tshirt, a mug koozie, a postercard, and poster.
In order to win... take a picture of yourself making a funny face (or draw one if you have no camera) and upload it to our Flickr group with the tag awesomefunnyface.
THEN... tell me what a "koozie" is. This second part is not actually a requirement of the contest, it's just for my own personal info.
YOU HAVE UNTIL APRIL 13TH, the DATE THE FILM IS RELEASED.
In the early 1960s, James P. Coyle and Mal Sharpe roamed the streets of San Francisco, microphone in hand, roping strangers into bizarre schemes and surreal stunts. Today, their humor is a cultural touchstone for artists as varies as Henry Rollins and The Upright Citizens Brigade.
These recordings are from the Sharpe family archive, which is tended by Mal's daughter, Jennifer Sharpe. You can learn more about Coyle & Sharpe on their website or on MySpace. Their recent box set is These 2 Men Are Imposters.
This week, Coyle & Sharpe attempt to lease out two children. (The children will receive a portion of the proceeds.)
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