Monday, August 03, 2009

'Talk' of the Town

David Carr's Media Equation column is worth a read this week as he remembers the "impossibly glamorous" launch party for Tina Brown's ill-fated Talk magazine 10 years ago this week. Although none of them realized it at the time, the seven-figure even under the Statute of Liberty unofficially marked the end of the gilded age of publishing::

Sponsored liquor flowed, women teetered about on heels in deep grass, and the A-list guest list -- Mr. Kissinger, please meet Miss um Ms. uh meet Madonna -- was a testament to the power of the synergized word. Content was king and Ms. Brown was its queen.

Flush with cash from the go-go ’90s and engorged by spending from the dot-com era, mainstream media companies seemed poised on the brink of something extraordinary. But that brink ended up being a cliff.

“It seems like that happened in the 18th century,” said Ms. Brown by phone last Friday.

What I remember is wishing so badly that I could score an invite. (You'd be surprised by how few connections one has working at PR Newswire!) As it's long been, the magazine world was WAY OVERCROWDED then, so I didn't think for a minute it was going to succeed -- and I wasn't even blaming the Internet. Of course, leave it to one of my friends to have the best take on the whole situation, with a teen idol twist neither Brown nor I would have EVER seen coming:

JD wrote: I don't get the whole Tina Brown thing. I think she has created a perception that she is really important British goods but whatever she has done the past 8 years doesn't last. CNBC, her column in the Washington Post. She's like another Mandy Moore with a British accent, doing whatever career-pasta sticks to the wall.

1 comment:

Marc Lallanilla said...

"Whatever career-pasta sticks to the wall." Brilliant.

And don't worry, Kenneth. Someday soon we internet writers will be the Gore Vidals and Tom Wolfes of our era. (God, I hope it's soon.) Once all the deadwood gets shaken out of the internet tree - yes, like Rosie O'Donnell's blog, - then we'll rise to the top. Invites to celebretard-studded Oscar parties and big music-industry bashes will come flowing our way. See you there!

(Personally, the party I wish I was at most? Truman Capote's Black & White Ball at the Plaza Hotel.)