I think I like being used in an offhand reference without further identification for a gag lead in this LA Times review of three books about the web:
When the history of the Web is written, in what form will our progeny receive it? Via grainy promotional YouTube videos from Google? By listening to dusty Jeff Jarvis podcasts? Perhaps annotated, crowd-sourced and pre-preferenced Wikistories will be delivered directly into their cerebrums. (Personally, I’m hoping for a tiny avatar of a young woman in a flowing white gown and side-buns, interrupted midway by gunfire.) Yet whatever the medium, it seems unlikely that it will be the one that’s falling out of favor even as you read this: the plain old book.
At McSweeney’s Robert Lanham pitches his course in “Writing for Nonreaders in the Postprint Era.”
As print takes its place alongside smoke signals, cuneiform, and hollering, there has emerged a new literary age, one in which writers no longer need to feel encumbered by the paper cuts, reading, and excessive use of words traditionally associated with the writing trade. Writing for Nonreaders in the Postprint Era focuses on the creation of short-form prose that is not intended to be reproduced on pulp fibers.
Instant messaging. Twittering. Facebook updates. These 21st-century literary genres are defining a new “Lost Generation” of minimalists who would much rather watch Lost on their iPhones than toil over long-winded articles and short stories. Students will acquire the tools needed to make their tweets glimmer with a complete lack of forethought, their Facebook updates ring with self-importance, and their blog entries shimmer with literary pithiness. All without the restraints of writing in complete sentences. w00t! w00t! Throughout the course, a further paring down of the Hemingway/Stein school of minimalism will be emphasized, limiting the superfluous use of nouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives, conjunctions, gerunds, and other literary pitfalls.
Please don’t make me tell you he’s being ironic. That’s one problem he doesn’t cover in his syllabus: commenters who can’t read.
I hope I’m not the last to discover this: Harry Shearer complies great off-air moments of Laura Ingraham being a complete itch. If you’re a Howard Stern fan and you like those moments from Orson Welles ,William Shattner, and Jessica Savitch having snit fits, then you’ll love this.
Tracey Ullman does a dead-on imitation of Arianna Huffington on her new show. Can’t embed it — fools — but go to this page and click the right-arrow on the videos until you see her.
: LATER: Here’s the clip, provided by Showtime:
This is what I said to Showtime in response:
But if I may suggest: You should enable people to embed it on their own. You want it to spread? That’s how it will spread. The days of marketing to get people to come to your site are past. You want your site to go to where the people are. Read today’s Brian Stelter piece in The Times. Free advice.