by Henry Farrell on January 27, 2004

I’m running to catch a plane, so I’m taking the lazy blogger’s way out.


“Steven Berlin Johnson”: and Jack Balkin (“here”: and “here”: on whether the Internet is destroying democracy.

“Ed Felten”: on why Republican Senate file-snoopers may have indeed broken the law.

“Jessa Crispin”: and “About Last Night”: on changes afoot in the NYT Book Review (I’m with both of ’em – read the Washington Post’s “Book World”:, and especially the incomparable “Michael Dirda”: instead).

“Belle Waring”: on wusscore, a rapidly expanding musical genre.

“Amity Wilczek”: on slugporn.



tim 01.27.04 at 5:08 pm

Michael Dirda took the buyout.


Rv. Agnos 01.27.04 at 7:41 pm

Get back to me when you’ve got some wusscore slugporn.


Chris Martin 01.28.04 at 5:34 pm

Jessica Crispin has a more recent post in which she quotes this response that the NYT is giving to people who enquire about Bill Keller’s remarks:

“I can’t claim that I was misquoted, but I do think the interview has been misread, to the extent people think there is a groundswell of opinion for dumbing down the Review, or abandoning new, literary fiction. What I was describing was not a secret blueprint for the review. None exists. But there is a pretty clear consensus, among the dozen or so candidates [for the editor’s job] who wrote up their ideas about the Review, and within the paper, on the need for a serious rejuvenation of book coverage, aimed at injecting more variety, more argument, more life.
“Those who are angry or anxious about anticipated changes in our book coverage should know that any proposal I make will include an expansion of the space devoted to this subject — both in the Book Review itself, and in the arts section of the daily paper. Thus the idea that I want to cover ‘the book industry more and individual titles less’ is wrong. It’s not a zero sum game.
“I do think we should be more discriminating and less formulaic in our coverage of new fiction, but that does not mean we intend to ‘demote literary fiction.’ It means we do not have to give 800 words to every first novel, built around an extensive plot summary. Some we can cover at greater length. Some we can cover in briefs (and a brief does not have to be dismissive). Some we can cover in essays that may span several new novels. Make no mistake, I want us to be the place readers come to discover exciting new writers in all genres…
” We’re not going to ignore the next Zadie Smith in favor of Dennis Lehane. We’ll [report on] both.”

I hope this sets your mind at ease, as it has mine. Thanks for writing.

Yours sincerely,

Daniel Okrent
Public Editor
N.B.: Any opinions expressed here, unless otherwise attributed, are solely my own

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