Series-Skipper: Shaw Must Go On!

Political commentary and more.
Feb. 20 2001 3:21 AM

Series-Skipper: Shaw Must Go On!

Series-Skipper™ is a new service from kausfiles that lets readers avoid award-winning newspaper series without fear of missing anything good. (For more on the rationale for Series-Skipper™, click here.) Today's edition summarizes a characteristically bloated effort from the Los Angeles Times' Pulitzer Prize-winning media reporter, David Shaw. But because time is precious to our readers, and Shaw's series is especially unrewarding, we are introducing an additional feature, Series-Skipper-Skipper™, which lets readers know if it's worth reading even a summary of the series.

Advertisement

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Series: "Lights, Camera, Reaction--How the news media cover Hollywood," by David Shaw, Los Angeles Times, four parts, Feb. 12-15.

Series-Skipper-Skipper™--Is it worth reading the following Series-Skipper™ summary of this series? No. Read something else. You won't miss much.

What the series says:

Part 1: The press focuses too much on "box office grosses and budget overruns," puff pieces and gossip tidbits, and spends too little time on "investigative reporting, insightful profiles, and provocative analyses." Box office numbers are often manipulated by the studios; accurate budget figures are hard to get too.

Part 2:  People in Hollywood routinely lie to reporters. Sources often don't like to be quoted by name. Former Disney studio chief Joe Roth gets good press because he's relatively honest.

Part 3: Variety and the Hollywood Reporter have an intense rivalry. They too often allow themselves to be spun, and "seem more interested in being first than in being right." Anita Busch, editor of Hollywood Reporter, "has never married." That's because she's "married to her job"!

Part 4:  The L.A.Times used to be soft on Hollywood. Now it's getting better, but it's still not as good as the Wall Street Journal. Detractors of the LAT's Claudia Eller say she "uses her stories to flatter her favorites and denigrate" those she doesn't like. She denies it. Joe Roth gets good press because he's relatively honest.

Does Shaw give an example of an actual box office figure that was actually manipulated? No. But he only has 16,000 words!

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Smash and Grab

Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?

Stop Panicking. America Is Now in Very Good Shape to Respond to the Ebola Crisis.

The 2014 Kansas City Royals Show the Value of Building a Mediocre Baseball Team

The GOP Won’t Win Any Black Votes With Its New “Willie Horton” Ad

Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band

Can it be again?

Technocracy

Forget Oculus Rift

This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.

One of Putin’s Favorite Oligarchs Wants to Start an Orthodox Christian Fox News

These Companies in Japan Are More Than 1,000 Years Old

Trending News Channel
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 20 2014 8:14 PM You Should Be Optimistic About Ebola Don’t panic. Here are all the signs that the U.S. is containing the disease.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 20 2014 7:23 PM Chipotle’s Magical Burrito Empire Keeps Growing, Might Be Slowing
  Life
Outward
Oct. 20 2014 3:16 PM The Catholic Church Is Changing, and Celibate Gays Are Leading the Way
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM I Am 25. I Don't Work at Facebook. My Doctors Want Me to Freeze My Eggs.
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 20 2014 7:15 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 9 A spoiler-filled discussion of "Flatline."
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 20 2014 9:13 PM The Smart, Talented, and Utterly Hilarious Leslie Jones Is SNL’s Newest Cast Member
  Technology
Technocracy
Oct. 20 2014 11:36 PM Forget Oculus Rift This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual-reality experience.
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Oct. 20 2014 11:46 AM Is Anybody Watching My Do-Gooding? The difference between being a hero and being an altruist.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.