Off the Media: Gates v. Garfield v. Blogosphere

“On the Media” co-host Bob Garfield this week asks America’s-richest-man, philanthropist and future thinker Bill Gates what we’ve all wanted to know: What do you think of those Mac ads on TV that make you look really doofy? “But it’s you!” Garfield quips, when Gates refuses to talk about “another company’s” ads. Evidently, not everyone got the point, and Garfield at three in the morning found himself writing a response to a commentary about what a publicity hungry hound he is. That’s almost too meta for us.

Meanwhile, laughter was heard over this script that was cleverly written in the passive voice in which good fun was made of the Administration’s — any administration’s — inability to say “Yep, we did it — sorry,” and instead say that “mistakes were made.” (Though Clinton never did say “Sex was had with that woman” — and Garfield notes that all his examples are from Republicans — we bet a few slippery Democratic examples could have been found.)

With co-host Brooke Gladstone, NYU’s Siva Vaidhyanathan explains that Viacom and its ilk probably need Google more than the other way around, billion-dollar lawsuits notwithstanding: “Having stuff up on YouTube is priceless. Being kind to your fans by giving them content that they can use and reuse and sometimes even abuse is never a bad business strategy.” OK, Siva. Mind of we put your book online?