Author Archives: Jon Taplin

Does Talent Matter?

Over the weekend 12,500 screaming fans showed up at Citi Field in Queens for DigiFest NYC. They were not screaming in appreciation of some new boy band or rap star. They were screaming for Cameron Dallas, whose only apparent talent … Continue reading

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St. Petersburg, Art Capital of the World

I’ve just spent four days exploring the art museums of St. Petersburg, Russia. I’ve spent a lot of time in the art museums of Paris, New York, Los Angeles, Berlin, Tokyo, Madrid, Rome, Florence and Venice and I think St. … Continue reading

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Utility vs Aesthetics

  I had dinner in Moscow last night with a really smart Brit, who had come to Moscow to work in advertising eight years ago. In talking about the dining experience in Russia,he mentioned that many older Russians still regarded … Continue reading

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Thought Police on Campus

I’m afraid these poor sensitive sophomores can’t read “Huckleberry Finn” without a warning label. Should students about to read “The Great Gatsby” be forewarned about “a variety of scenes that reference gory, abusive and misogynistic violence,” as one Rutgers student … Continue reading

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United States of Secrets

The Frontline documentary, United States of Secrets, Pt. 1 is one of the most important television programs of the last decade. It is a tale of how Dick Cheney and his lawyer David Addington, remade the surveillance policies of America … Continue reading

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Is the Music TV Show Dead?

Fox began airing American Idol in June of 2002 and for eight straight years it was the number one rated TV show in America. It so outdrew the competition that the other networks pretty much gave up trying to counter … Continue reading

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Digital Monopoly Capitalism

This week it was revealed that Amazon has been bullying the publishing house of Hachette to give it better terms. Among Amazon’s tactics against Hachette, some of which it has been employing for months, are charging more for its books … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments


Johnny Humble There was a point about two hours into last night’s NFL Draft where the supremely arrogant Johnny Manziel seemed like the kid that no one wanted to pick for their kickball team. After the 20th pick had gone … Continue reading

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Tyranny of Choice

Brian Roberts, who runs Comcast, should take a look at this chart. In the last seven years our cable bill has almost doubled and part of the rationale for this is that we have so many more channels to choose … Continue reading

Posted in Television | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

The Internet and Art

Every year the New York Times movie critics A.O. Scott and Manohla Dargis write a series of memos directed to the media barons whose financial choices affect the creative output the two critics review for a living. Buried among longer … Continue reading

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