YouTube Sensation Kate Upton Shakes Up the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue

Why is Kate Upton creating so much noise? Look around. So many once-bedrock institutions up for grabs—newspapers, the Republican Party, our school system … and now the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, too? The S.I. swimsuit issue, though not of the same import as journalism or public education, was an institution we—or at least adolescent American boys— could count on, at least until Upton up and shook her bad self on the Internet. Read more »

Decoding Philly Media: How Four Local Websites Covered the Same Story

By now, you know the story. Let us briefly review.

A Penn kid, name of Brian Goldman, is in a cab at 15th and Chestnut. Three card-carrying members of our city’s soulless teenage population—our tragic version of the Walking Dead—are standing on the corner. One of the teenage zombies throws his fist through the cab’s open window and nails Goldman on the jaw. Read more »

Philly Is More Than Violence and Bad Schools

Who are we? There seems an ongoing need in us to define the city and our populace definitively.

That particular need spikes every time there’s a vivid outbreak of violence (ever more so when the victims are Caucasian). We appear to be experiencing a dandy outbreak right now. You may have noticed. Read more »,, and Four Other Things You Ought to Be Reading

Wait, another list?


Enough with the year-end lists already!

Agreed, but, please, there are reasons for year-end lists: (1) readership is down between Christmas and New Year’s, which means the motivation for writers to do heavy lifting is down as well, and (2) readers don’t want to read sobering posts about the housing downturn or the pedophilia epidemic until after the new year. We’re still in quasi-vacation mode. It’s a time to go easy.

Shaky rationalizations over, here are six broadly literary enterprises that deserve kudos this year. Read more »

The Shock of the Bill Conlin Accusations

“The soulless have no need of melancholia,” said Vladimir Odoevsky, a Russian writer who died in 1869 and is said to have prophesied the Internet Age.

Comforting words, and words worth keeping close, particularly in the granddaddy of melancholy seasons. Read more »

Dexter Is Killing Joan Didion

It used to be, back when we all read books, that right about now, with the Three Wise Men lumbering into our line of vision, we’d double down on our holiday book requests to make sure we had adequately communicated to our loved ones the titles we hoped to see under the tree. Read more »

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