That German guy and his beard


Just a brief post to cross the language barrier with an amusing story going on in German media.

Kai Diekmann is the explosively colorful, diabolically charming, dangerously brilliant, stunt-prone editor-in-chief of the largest paper in Europe, Bild (it’s a tabloid in spirit that is printed on really big paper so the bare breasts are bigger). His company, Axel Springer, scares even big, (not) bad Google. He unseated a German president. He is powerful.

For reasons I cannot remember — I think it had something to do with his nine-month-long visit to Silicon Valley, during which he partook of many delicious, digital lotus leaves — Diekmann started growing a beard that became his temporary trademark. His Christmas card last year was of him with a beard that wouldn’t stop growing. He retweeted every beard joke about him.

Today, in a stunt to end all stunts (well, probably not), Kai is shaving the beard on national TV. To benefit the Bild charity Ein Herz Für Kinder (A Heart for Children), the razor giant Gillette — of course — and supermarket giant EDEKA are paying 100,000€ to shave off Kai’s beard.

The German advertising magazine W&V calls it what it is: content marketing with a beard. The editor as native advertising.

One can hardly imagine a stuffy American editor doing such a thing. Heaven forbid. But, of course, American journalism used to have such larger-than-life editors: Hearst, Pulitzer, and James Gordon Bennett, Jr., whose paper, the New York Herald, was the namesake of the square where he is now memorialized and who funded expeditions to Africa (Stanley, meet Livingstone) and the Arctic:

bennett herald square

Digital media may breed such characters. Arianna Huffington was herself a bit of a swashbuckler, until she disappointingly — in my mind — shifted her ambitions from running the world to being Oprah. This week at CUNY, we gave the Knight Innovation Award to Shane Smith — he just returned from jumping off a helicopter in the antarctic — who has built an impressive empire atop his strong editorial voice. (Disclosure: He and Knight awarded the school $500,000 to establish a fund to support young journalists around the world.) But how many others are there?

Well, anyway, tonight Diekmann will be clean-shaven once again. I understand his wife will be relieved.

: Half-a-postscript: Halfway there:

Finally:

  • Ke kesu
  • noushad

    Some prefer to have a natural fat burning foods to lose
    weight to be safe and to avoid common mishaps of surgeries. Natural fat burning
    foods to lose weight is hard to achieve especially with people who can’t resist
    food temptation. Numerous methods exist and one of these is cutting carbs in
    the diet. for know more visit

    http://
    naturalfatburningfoodstoloseweightz.blogspot.com/