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Lisanti Gets Another 15 Minutes

Hats off to the Los Angeles Times Calendar section for celebrating its newest competitor as the lead story, above the fold, in today’s newspaper. I blogged about Lisanti a couple of months ago. Interestingly enough, it’s the fourth story listed online. Mark Lisanti is the blogger behind Defamer, who Rachel Abramowitz describes as:

“…more Jon Stewart than Page Six — a wisecracking Virgil leading readers through various circles of celebrity hell, linking to stories all over the Web, and to weird ephemera often sent in by readers, such as the casting call for the “Pirates of the Caribbean” sequel, which called for “hideously unattractive types, odd body shapes or very lean to extremely skinny. Missing teeth, wandering eyes and serial killer looks with real long hair & beards.

But the real gem of the story, is quote from USC professor LeoBraudyy, explaining the staggering popularity of celebrity news. Here it is:

Celebrity has always been intertwined with America’s concept of itself as a democratic nation, saysBraudyy. “It’s the Lincoln myth,— if you can go from the log cabin to the White House, how much more democratic [a country] can you be?” He adds that celebrity can act like an opiate. “It distracts you from real issues. It’s consoling. It’s not inconsistent for someone to be very worried about the war in Iraq and fascinated by what happens to Brad Pitt. It’s a kind of solace. The original meaning of escapism.”

Mark who be an interesting get for my On the Record…Online podcast, as a follow up to the Richard Johnson interview I did last month.

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