Media X: The Suck 2008

The Los Angeles Times is not entirely a worthless piece of foul-smelling pulp. Every so often, there is actually something worth reading. Like last weekend, when I found a piece on medical science myths.

I learned that poinsettias are not toxic to people, dogs or ad holding company executives, that suicides do not increase during the holidays, and that "douching with Coca-Cola is not an effective contraceptive method."

Damn. There goes the Chanukah gift for the ex-wife.

Anyway, this being the day before we conflate a pagan orgy celebrating the winter solstice and the virgin birth of Your Lord without a hint of irony, I got your Christmas presents right here.

This is my "what I screwed up this year" column.

I like to think of it as an enema for my ethics. Last time I did a "what I got wrong this year" column, I was the West Coast bureau chief of Inside Media.

That was a long time ago.

What's Inside Media, you ask?

That's how long ago it was.



It was so long ago that I made a Tom Rubin joke in that earlier column. If you don't live in Los Angeles and are unaware of the felon previously known as the CEO of Focus Media who absconded to Paris with millions of Sears media money, you might not get that line.

Well, sorry, but you are in no position to complain. What other writer would care enough about your feelings to do a column like this? You sure won't get corrective end-of-year columns from the tools that cover digital media. (No one has the bandwidth to stream that much bad journalism.) So you should cut me some slack. I'm being all responsible and stuff.

Here, then, are the top 10 things I got wrong in 2008:

10. Constantly missed opportunities to use the phrase "long tail" to refer to agency executives' ancestry.

9. Failed to note that the word "viral" refers to an infection. 8. Some readers corrected my grammar. Which your opinion of I think you know how I feel is.

7. Others think my frequent use of profanity is juvenile. I hate that shit.

6. McCain didn't win. Not that it matters. It's already apparent that we're in for a lot less change than we voted for. Rick Warren? Seriously?

5. The Four As does have a clue. Jack Klues left one in a conference room after a meeting on addressability, and Nancy Hill found it. But she gave the clue to a committee, and no one's seen it since.

4. The marketplace did not flood with communications channel boutiques like Naked. Although it is now clear that Malcolm Gladwell and Paul Woolmington were separated at birth.

3. The napkin formerly known as Adweek survives. It's the staff that's been killed.

2. Cannes is not a "crapfest." That is an insult to crapfests.

1. I should have made MediaPost pay me in Euros.

So there you have it. Ten reasons why I sucked last year. And if you think that's a lot, wait 'til next year.

Speaking of which, Happy New Year, too. You might want to note that according to the Los Angeles Times, "there is no consistently effective cure for a hangover."

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