Friday March 21, 2003

I’m somewhat ashamed to admit that the 24/7 news coverage has me addicted like I’m on crack or something. As I’ve said before, I’m really a news junkie, but there’s a certain point where you realize that you’re going in excess. For me, that point is probably when I realized that during the day I was checking drudgereport.com every 30 minutes while simultaneously listening to NPR. At night, I’ve been staying up until 3am in the morning flipping between CBS, MSNBC, and CNN coverage of the war. Must stop… I had a similar obsessive reaction following 9/11, and again at the beginning of the Afghanistan campaign. Is there some kind of methadone for news coverage? It’s really quite gross… Like some kind of passive fascination.

What’s hot this month? How about people getting engaged, or married…? I found out about at least FOUR couples within a one week span: Joel and Angela, Ollie and his Taiwainese chickie, Flea and Hien (who I don’t know formally, but oddly recognize from pictures), Bryan and another Angela. Also.. Xanga. As Leslie says, it seems that the Asianz luvs their Xanga.

At some point, I need to begin writing my movie reviews. Pat and I had a very interesting discussion today about what the next big feature for Rotten Tomatoes should be. We finished doing our new video games section in the winter. While we have a couple of odds and ends left to do, it’s really about time for us to plan our next step. Everyone seems to be pushing us towards doing something subscription-based, but I still have very grave doubts that there’s enough viable things that we can offer to justify the effort into developing a subscription program. Patrick and I agree alot on this point that we can’t just throw just a bunch of small features out there and let it fail — there has to be something really compelling that would convince several thousands of our readers (ideally, more like five to ten thousand) to part with their money. At the same time, I’m very adamant that the “subscription features” have to tie directly in to Rotten Tomatoes’ strong brand identity. We’re the site that people go to when people want to figure out what movies to watch (and now, what video games to play); that means, movies, video games, and reviews. I don’t want to shoot off onto some tangent by offering something that’s not related to our brand. Both of us really our fascinated by this Xanga thing and the fact that it’s really well designed to ensnare people and their friends and get a sizable portion of them to subscribe. I’m not saying that I necessary want Rotten Tomatoes to do blogging, but I think both Pat and I want to find something as compelling as the blogging experience, but transferred to Rotten Tomatoes. I need some kind of divine inspiration to hit me…

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