Lingerie football – TVNZ…Why do we need to know?

May 16, 2009

OK, it’s Saturday, it’s football season, but this is not right. Not only do we have the Cronulla Sharks to deal with, now we have the ladies’ HotGirlsAndFootball-motivational-posterleague to distract and bewitch us.

Consider my utter and absolute dismay when Lingerie Football [NSFW] was presented as a “news” item at the end of the TVNZ bulletin.

I am very disappointed that TVNZ thinks it’s OK to humiliate female newsreaders for the sake of a tits’n’arse ratings point or two.

I’ve been home most of the day, I was doing some marking and preparing for my Writers & Reader’s Festival gig tomorrow afternoon. I had the TV on in the background because Moac was shopping for warm, smart and “grrrrrhhhhh…..merino!”

Throughout the day I was switching between Snoop’Dog THS, football, baseball, motor racing, Coro-omnibus, gardening shows, netball and news. At least a dozen times I heard the Sky-guys yakkin’ on about “lingerie football”.

A “no news” news item that’s most certainly a result of Flat Earth replicators. So it was and so it came to be that TVNZ replictated the advertising meme on cue.

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Postmodernism and the Bonaventure Hotel

September 10, 2008

[Updated 10 September 2008]

I’ve just stayed for two nights in the Westin-branded Bonaventure hotel in downtown Los Angeles. I was keen to stay there and explore the hotel because it’s something of an icon in architecture and also a building that evokes strong reactions in people.

Some of the hotel’s history is recorded at Wikipedia. The Bonaventure is a bit of a star in the city of stars. It has appeared in loads of movies and TV series since construction was finished in 1976.

I was fascinated by this hotel because it features in the work of Marxist cultural theorist Fredric Jameson and has been something of a touchstone for postmodern cultural theorists ever since, such as Jason Berger, who re-examined some of Jameson’s argument that the cultural logic of postmodernism reinforces the hold of capitalism on the popular consciousness:

Using a reinterpretation of Jameson’s own work, I will argue that his analysis of the hyperspace within the Bonaventure Hotel in his original 1988 essay provides evidence that postmodernism does create a resistance to late capitalism through spatial “deterritorialization.”[Berger 2004]

I’ve never really agreed with this idea. To me postmodernism is a capitulation to capitalist relations of production and a celebration of crass, kitsche consumerism as the new revolution.

So is the Bonaventure a celebration of capitalism, or does the building condemn consumerism?

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Celeblogging – so yesterday

April 28, 2007
“Celeblogging” – the tasteless art of tittle-tattle about two-bit half-wits that we’re sick of hearing about.

Does Australia, or the world for that matter, really need or deserve another senseless and humourless website devoted to blogging about celebrities? Well, apparently one company thinks there’s money to be made by mining this weak vein once again. Here’s a story from Friday’s edition of crikey, which outlines the deal.

Crikey 27 April 2007
Look out, wonkettes: Defamer hits Oz

By Jane Nethercote

Defamer now has an Australian lovechild.

Based in LA, the original Defamer blog — part of the Gawker Media stable along with Gawker , Wonkette and Valleywag — takes Hollywood gossip for a smart and riotous spin.

Australia is getting some of the action. Not that there’s been much fanfare — Crikey only discovered the active site yesterday thanks to a bit of procrastinatory internet gambolling. Gawker Media’s gadget blog Gizmodo also has an Australian spin-off .

The two titles are published in Australia by Allure Media — an outfit that was established by Netus, an investment company which sets up proven tech-based business models in the Australian market. Netus, which is financially backed by News Limited, is run by folk like eCorp alumni Daniel Petre and Alison Deans who helped bring eBay to Australia (as MediaConnect/ITJourno (via Squash) has noted).

Crikey understands that Netus initiated the arrangement, approaching Gawker Media to do a licensing deal. And although it’s stopping at two blogs at this stage, Allure Media in fact has “rights to all the Gawker titles”, managing director of Allure Media Chris Janz tells Crikey.

But we shouldn’t expect an Australian Wonkette any time soon. They’re stopping at one gossip publication for now.

Defamer was chosen for Australia, rather than its more famous sister blog Manhattan-based Gawker, because the Hollywood focus translates more easily for an Australian audience. And Defamer Oz will be sharing copy with the US version.

As for the Australian content, it’s in good hands. At the helm is Jess McGuire who established herself as an Australian blogosfigure at pop culture mecca Ausculture which brought us all-important live blogging of Australian Idol and Big Brother, Neighbours wraps, Dolly Parton Appreciation Week and turkeyslapgate.

So will the bitchy and witty Ausculture vibe penetrate Defamer Oz? “I would hope so”, McGuire tells Crikey. There are “no plans of impersonating Mark [Lisanti], editor of Defamer. The good folks that are getting me to do it, knew what they were getting into. I won’t change my writing style too much … Though perhaps I “won’t be as rudely angry about political issues”.

The Defamer approach is to “not ever really be cruel” and “that’s my philosophy” for the Australian edition, she says. The aim is to produce something that’s shamelessly pop culture-based but more clever than one-trick ponies like puerile gossip blog Perez Hilton. “I can’t fathom why the Australian media is bending over backwards for Perez Hilton”, says McGuire. “He’s not a good writer … I have a problem with the media fel-ating him”. There are “far better bloggers in the States writing about pop culture”.

Still, she concedes, “there’s a market for everything”.

Yep, including a “bitch slap” festival between the Defamer crew and a two-bit, “blogger to the stars”, Perez Hilton.

The sooner we get over our obsession with celebrity, the better. This stuff is so purile it makes reality television look positively Shakespearean, not!

Just a thought: Isn’t Perez Hilton that little dog that Paris carries in her Gucci tote along with the cocaine, marijuana, s*x toys and video-camera?