An interview with gossip columnist Michael Musto on the art of celebrity journalism

An interview with gossip columnist Michael Musto on the art of celebrity journalism

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Sunday, October 7, 2007

There are two things one can expect on a trip to see Michael Musto at the offices of the Village Voice: a 20-minute round-trip wait for the elevator and rapid fire answers from one of the most recognizable gossip columnists in the United States. Musto, in addition to his appearances on Countdown with Keith Olbermann and the E! network, has been writing his column for the Voice since 1984. He has recently compiled the best of them in a book released this year titled, La Dolce Musto: Writings by the World’s Most Outrageous Columnist. He was Carrie Bradshaw, replete with a prodigious use of puns, before Sex in the City was a thought. His column is a romp through his life, spats and opinions on socio-political issues. As David Thigpen of the Chicago Tribune wrote, Musto is “a funny and caustic satirist who masquerades as a gossip and nightlife columnist.”

Musto, a Columbia University graduate, is a rarity in today’s celebrity world: he is accessible. He often corresponds with his readers and his public functions are a mix of parties, nightclubs, academic lectures, university panels and film premieres.

He is friendly and frank, and he welcomes people to join him in his world (“I just got a message that Michael Lucas died!” he says staring wide-eyed at his phone; the message turned out to be false). Wikinews reporter David Shankbone spoke with Musto about his life and his relationship to the world of celebrity journalism. And he did not hold back.


  • 1 On writing a gossip column
  • 2 On celebrities
  • 3 On the gay community
  • 4 On outing gay celebrities
  • 5 On New York City
  • 6 Musto on Musto
  • 7 Sources

Interview with Glen Stollery of

Interview with Glen Stollery of

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Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Glen Stollery is a New Zealand website developer who created the site in mid 2005. The site, which is a parody of Tom Cruise and his involvement with the Church of Scientology, became the centre of controversy when it was served with a number of cease and desist orders initiated by the Church. On March 19, 2006, Glen issued a media release stating that his web hosting provider, YouTube, had removed videos of Tom Cruise which formed part of the site. The release suggested that YouTube had taken this action under external pressure from Cruise or Viacom.

Responding to a query by Wikinews reporters, YouTube stated “We have not received a DMCA notification letter from Viacom.” The Church of Scientology was offered the opportunity to respond to the claims made by Stollery during the interview. No reply was received.

This exclusive interview deals with these issues and others relating to the website. It was conducted with Glen via email between March 21 and April 3, 2006.

Edmund White on writing, incest, life and Larry Kramer

Edmund White on writing, incest, life and Larry Kramer

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Thursday, November 8, 2007

What you are about to read is an American life as lived by renowned author Edmund White. His life has been a crossroads, the fulcrum of high-brow Classicism and low-brow Brett Easton Ellisism. It is not for the faint. He has been the toast of the literary elite in New York, London and Paris, befriending artistic luminaries such as Salman Rushdie and Sir Ian McKellen while writing about a family where he was jealous his sister was having sex with his father as he fought off his mother’s amorous pursuit.

The fact is, Edmund White exists. His life exists. To the casual reader, they may find it disquieting that someone like his father existed in 1950’s America and that White’s work is the progeny of his intimate effort to understand his own experience.

Wikinews reporter David Shankbone understood that an interview with Edmund White, who is professor of creative writing at Princeton University, who wrote the seminal biography of Jean Genet, and who no longer can keep track of how many sex partners he has encountered, meant nothing would be off limits. Nothing was. Late in the interview they were joined by his partner Michael Caroll, who discussed White’s enduring feud with influential writer and activist Larry Kramer.


  • 1 On literature
  • 2 On work as a gay writer
  • 3 On sex
  • 4 On incest in his family
  • 5 On American politics
  • 6 On his intimate relationships
  • 7 On Edmund White
  • 8 On Larry Kramer
  • 9 Source

Wikinews Shorts: August 13, 2009

Wikinews Shorts: August 13, 2009

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A compilation of brief news reports for Thursday, August 13, 2009.


  • 1 Paris suffers second night of violence
  • 2 No concrete progress but North American leaders express solidarity
  • 3 Mexican federal police foil plot to assassinate President Calderón
  • 4 Aung San Suu Kyi sentenced to another three years of house arrest
  • 5 Four Rio Tinto employees formally arrested for bribery
  • 6 Michael Jackson to be the star one last time

The French capital Paris has seen a second night of violence by demonstrators, who have blamed police for the death of a motorcyclist on Sunday.

On Sunday night youths in the eastern suburb of Bagnolet, set 29 vehicles alight and threw stones and petrol bombs at police. Monday night was “relatively calm” according to Samira Amrouche, spokeswoman for the regional administration, the authorities having depolyed 40 vans of riot police only 8 vehicles were burnt.

The motorcyclist, a pizza deliveryman, was killed when he fled police attempting to examine his documents, dying when he was struck by a pursuing police vehicle according to the youths,however in the police version his death was a result of him crashing into barriers.

The current violence has echoes of the unrest in 2005, with again dissaffected youths of Arab and black descent venting their anger and frustration.


The leaders of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) met in Guadalajara, Mexico on Sunday and Monday. The leaders of the three countries (Barack Obama of the United States, Felipe Calderón of Mexico, and Stephen Harper of Canada) promised to work together on swine flu, organised crime and green issues.

Despite disputes in a number of areas remaining unresolved, the three leaders succeeded in presenting an amiable Three Amigos image. The three leaders expressed solidarity, and an understanding of each others position.

The unresolved issues include the buy American clauses in the US stimulus package, tit for tat reprisals by the Mexican authorities over Canadian visa restrictions on Mexican travellers, and the US ban on Mexican trucks from crossing the border.

Risking the ire of human rights activists back home President Obama expressed support for President Calderón’s war against drugs saying he had “great confidence” in the Mexican authorities.


Mexican Federal Police (Policía Federal) have foiled an alleged plot to assasinate the President of Mexico Felipe Calderón. Acting on intelligence gathered over a year the Federal Police arrested five drug cartel members on Sunday and publicly paraded their captives and a number of weapons ,including automatic rifles, on Monday. Speaking during a summit of North American leaders Calderón played down the threats on his life, saying that the cartels are being destroyed by his policies.

Some 11000 have died since President Calderón’s took office in 2006 and made the war on drugs a cornerstone of his administration.


Aung San Suu Kyi has been sentenced by a court in Burma to a further three years of house arrest for violating the terms of her previous sentence. However her sentence was immediately commuted to 18 months on the orders of Burmese head of state Senior-General Than Shwe out of respect for her father General Aung San and out of a desire for “national reconciliation”.

The period of her arrest will prevent Aung San Suu Kyi from participating in the general elections scheduled for 2010. The sentence was immediately condemned by Western leaders, and breaking from their usual silence, the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) through its current chair Thailand issued a statement expressing disappointment. The ASEAN statement and talk of further European Union and United States sanctions are unlikely to have any impact on Southeast Asian country given the support of India and China.

The Chinese issued a statement calling for the world to respect Burmese sovereignty and laws, and is seen as an indication that China, a veto power will not support any United Nations actions.

John Yettaw whose unauthorised visit led to Aung San Suu Kyi’s prosecution has himself been sentenced to seven years imprisonment, four of which will be for hard labour.


Four employees of the Rio Tinto Group have been formally arrested in China on charges of bribery and using improper practises in its negotiations with Chinese companies. The Chinese accuse the men of improperly learning the negotiating position of Chinese companies wishing to buy iron ore, and through this charging 700 billion yuan (US$102.46 billion) more then they would otherwise have been able to

The four were initially held on espionage charges and have been held since early July. The formal charges allows the Chinese authorities to hold the four a further seven months as it prepares its case against them. Their arrests followed the collapse of an attempted by Chinese owned Chinalco to raise its stake in the Anglo-Australian Rio Tinto Group to 18%.


Michael Jackson will be the star of a film to be released on October 28, some four months after his death. The film will be primarily cut from footage of Jackson rehearsing for the series of concerts that would have taken place at the O2 in London, but will also feature interviews with Jackson’s family and friends.

The film becomes possible after AEG Live, the promoter of the O2 concerts, reached an US$60 million agreement with Columbia Pictures for over 100 hours of footage of Jackson preparing for his swan song.

“He was the architect of ‘This is it‘, and we were his builders…” said Kenny Ortega, Jackson’s collaborator on the project “…it was clear that he was on his way to another theatrical triumph.”


Yell threatens to shut down Yellowikis

Yell threatens to shut down Yellowikis

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006

London — Yell, the world’s biggest yellow pages publisher, today threatened to shut down Yellowikis, the wiki-based yellow pages directory.

Yell accused Yellowikis co-founders Paul Youlten and his 15 year-old daughter Rosa Blaus of “misrepresentation”, “passing off” and suggested that using the name Yellowikis could “constitute an ‘instrument of fraud’.” Passing off is defined as misrepresenting a product and passing it off as one’s own. Passing off is a form of trademark infringement.

Yell is demanding that Paul and Rosa close down the website, transfer the domain names to Yell and agree to pay damages to Yell for loss of profits. Yell made $2.4bn in 2005, whereas Yellowikis had a loss of $500. The $500 was used to print T-shirts promoting Yellowikis at the Wikimania conference in Frankfurt.

Paul Youlten said: “This threat from Yell to shut us down looks like a sign of desperation. The whole yellow pages industry is in crisis. Use of the paper directories is collapsing as people get broadband Internet connections in their homes. Small and medium sized businesses are beginning to notice that their customers are ringing them up and saying ‘I found you on Google’ and not ‘I found you in the yellow pages’.”

Rosa Blaus said: “Maybe they are a bit jealous of Yellowikis because we allow companies to add videos, skype IDs, email addresses, instant messaging, in as many categories and languages as they like for free.” Blaus suggested to her father that they set up Yellowikis after she noticed small businesses were deleted from Wikipedia for not being “encyclopaedic”.

Yellowikis has been growing at 8.7% month-on-month and has 494 editors and about 5,000 articles listed.

The threat of legal action came after an article published in The Independent newspaper mentioned Yellowikis.

Tip For Buying Counter Height Kitchen Tables For The Home

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Submitted by: Jesse Akre

It wasn t so long ago that you d only find counter height kitchen tables in pubs and restaurants. But these days, they ve become a cherished part of homes everywhere, allowing family and friends to gather in new ways, whether it s in the kitchen, an informal dining space in a great room or a porch or deck.

In contrast to the higher pub tables you see, counter height kitchen tables strike a delicate balance. They are taller than a traditional kitchen table but lower than the pub-style table. They are perfect for young and old alike. Adults find them easier to get up from and children can easily get up on the stools or chairs themselves without the help of a grown up.

Counter height kitchen tables can be very formal or informal, depending on your personal tastes. Manufacturers have created a range of styles, from mission and contemporary to very traditional. Most counter height kitchen tables come with six to eight matching stools or chairs, allowing family and friends to gather together with ease.

If space is a bit limited, you can go with a five-piece version instead, which works well in smaller kitchens or apartments. Some of these counter height kitchen tables even have a hidden butterfly leaf in them so you can expand the table when guests come over. Just be sure to have a few extra matching stools or chairs handy. A standard folding chair won t work with these taller tables. Your guests will end up feeling like Lilliputians.

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When the dishes have been cleared, family and friends can continue to enjoy your counter height kitchen tables. They are perfect for conversation, some glasses of wine or a rousing board game or game of cards.

If you have an outdoor entertainment space, you can get counter height kitchen tables for these as well. While an indoor version may not work well, there are outdoor models as well, designed to weather the elements and give you years of enjoyment.

The same is true if you have a home theater or playroom. You can add counter height kitchen tables there, creating a mini-pub in your own home, allowing your guests to enjoy conversation, a movie and their favorite libations in another part of the home.

When shopping for counter height kitchen tables, you want to make sure that the style and size will fit the space you have in mind. These tables come in an endless array of styles, colors, finishes and sizes so you want to do your homework before placing an order.

A good way to do this is to go online first. Online retailers have a huge selection of these tables and it s easy to compare different designs and styles using their search features. You can also make comparisons between stores, ensuring that you re getting the best deal possible.

Keep in mind that a low price for an otherwise identical model doesn t always mean that it s cheaper. You need to factor in shipping and taxes. Many online retailers offer free shipping, so a seemingly higher priced table there can actually be cheaper once you factor in shipping costs. You ll also want to select a retailer who has a good return/exchange policy, so you can order in confidence, knowing that you can always return or exchange it if you find the table just wasn t exactly what you wanted for that empty space in your home.

Because there can be so many choices, you may want to pull off the photos of your favorites and compare them next to one another. This will help you visualize the table and how it will look in your home. You can even hold the photo up in the room to get some idea of how it will look with the rest of your furnishings and d cor.

About the Author: Jesse Akre owns Edenvale Shoppes and hosts numerous furniture and furnishings for any home whether it be

kitchen tables


pot racks

styles and designs.


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Seeds placed in Norwegian vault as agricultural ‘insurance policy’

Seeds placed in Norwegian vault as agricultural ‘insurance policy’

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a vault containing millions of seeds from all over the world, saw its first deposits on Tuesday. Located 800 kilometers from the North Pole on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, the vault has been referred to by European Commission president José Manuel Barroso as a “frozen Garden of Eden“. It is intended to preserve crop supplies and secure biological diversity in the event of a worldwide disaster.

“The opening of the seed vault marks a historic turning point in safeguarding the world’s crop diversity,” said Cary Fowler, executive director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust which is in charge of collecting the seed samples. The Norwegian government, who owns the bank, built it at a cost of $9.1 million.

At the opening ceremony, 100 million seeds from 268,000 samples were placed inside the vault, where there is room for over 2 billion seeds. Each of the samples originated from a different farm or field, in order to best ensure biological diversity. These crop seeds included such staples as rice, potatoes, barley, lettuce, maize, sorghum, and wheat. No genetically modified crops were included. (Beyond politics they are generally sterile so of no use.)

It is very important for Africa to store seeds here because anything can happen to our national seed banks.

Constructed deep inside a mountain and protected by concrete walls, the “doomsday vault” is designed to withstand earthquakes, nuclear warfare, and floods resulting from global warming. Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg called it an “insurance policy” against such threats.

With air-conditioned temperatures of -18 degrees Celsius, experts say the seeds could last for an entire millennium. Some crops will be able to last longer, like sorghum, which the Global Crop Diversity Trust says can last almost 20 millenniums. Even if the refrigeration system fails, the vaults are expected to stay frozen for 200 years.

The Prime Minister said, “With climate change and other forces threatening the diversity of life that sustains our planet, Norway is proud to be playing a central role in creating a facility capable of protecting what are not just seeds, but the fundamental building blocks of human civilization.” Stoltenberg, along with Kenyan Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wangari Maathai, made the first deposit of rice to the vault.

“It is very important for Africa to store seeds here because anything can happen to our national seed banks,” Maathai said. The vault will operate as a bank, allowing countries to use their deposited seeds free of charge. It will also serve as a backup to the thousands of other seed banks around the world.

“Crop diversity will soon prove to be our most potent and indispensable resource for addressing climate change, water and energy supply constraints and for meeting the food needs of a growing population,” Cary Fowler said.

Wikinews interviews Brooks Lindsay, founder of Debatepedia

Wikinews interviews Brooks Lindsay, founder of Debatepedia

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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

A reporter from Wikinews recently interviewed Brooks Lindsay, who is the founder of the online wiki Debatepedia, which claims to be the ‘Wikipedia of Debates.’

Brooks told Wikinews that “Debatepedia is a non-profit, free wiki encyclopedia of debates, pro and con arguments, and supporting evidence and quotes from scholars, experts, and op-ed writers (those figures that are actively engaged in these public debates).” He continued with “some people have called it the ‘Wikipedia of debate’, which is a pretty accurate description of what we are trying to do.”

He finished by stating that the site is “trying to cover all of the pro and con arguments in any public debate, on any topic from a global to a local level, from any region in the world, and hopefully, in the future, in any language. The objective is to frame debates in a pro/con structure – when they appropriately belong in a pro/con structure – so that people can effectively “weigh” the “sides” in a debate, deliberate, draw conclusions, and take a stand. “

The second question asked why he founded Debatepedia. He replied by saying that “With arguments, evidence, and quotes being scattered across the Internet, it is currently too difficult for citizens to view all the pros and cons, quotes, and supporting evidence in debates, deliberate and take a stand. We are trying to fill this void, on a global scale, and by open-sourcing the effort over MediaWiki software.”

When asked how Debatepedia will develop in the future Brooks said that he expects “the community of editors to grow to a much greater extent.” He also said that he hoped to be able to “clean up some of the software elements,” of the site.

When questioned about the importance of Debatepedia, Mr. Lindsay said that “Debatepedia is important for the reader and citizen as a tool to deliberate more effectively, develop greater conviction in what is righteous and what is not, and to generally increase citizen-engagement in debates, issues, and advocacy, across the world. For the writer, it is a way to have a greater voice and impact on other people, and other people’s thinking; it’s a great public service to help edit on Debatepedia, like on Wikipedia. Finally, there is the potential that Debatepedia will be used by leaders and representatives as a way to deliberate through a topic that they have to vote on, or as a destination to direct constituents to deliberate.” He said it was “perhaps a lofty goal, but real nevertheless.”

Swing Trading For Gigantic Profits Choosing A Winning Stock Market Trading System}

October 17th, 2017 | No Comments »
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Submitted by: Peter Lim ,CFP

It is surprising that many traders fail to take into consideration their own risk profile and also trading psychology in trying to find a winning stock market trading system that they can use daily to make consistent profits from the stock market.

On one occasion a trader approached me for some advice to create his own winning stock market trading system. Flushed with funds, he invested in a copy of an advanced stock market analysis program that had won awards for some 5 consecutive years as the best technical trading system for stocks and commodities. Costing over $5,000 this software would be a trader’s dream in tracking and trading the markets.

The use of the software involved re-learning a process of trading. The software had trading systems based on a combination of advanced WD Gann and Elliot Wave Techniques, and soon this trader was familar and able to input his trading system into the system tester to track, analyse and trade.

But was he happy with his system?

One week later, he rang me up on the phone and said.” Why is it that the stock pick list from the system does not change for 4 days? Why are the stock picks not moving anywhere…even after 4 days they have been identified.”

You see, he has not considered his trading needs, his personal risk and trading psychology.

Here he was, a trader who thrives to trade and can take more risk. Here was a trader who loves the trading action. He would be best seen making trades every day, and not sitting down there at the trading room or in front of his own trading desk observing and watching for the best moves to develop before he places his trades.

Instead, he has invested in a software that delves into the longer term trading system of elliot waves, of trading with the trend, of watching for trading opportuinities to set up when time and price meets for a change in trend according to the teachings of WD Gann. All these take time to develop, chart patterns take time to form and meanwhile this trader is unable to just sit and wait!

So if you are a trader who can take more risk and you want action – you want daily action – then choose a trading system that involves outbreaks of price and volume, rather than trading systems that are based on longer term setups involving time, price and pattern.

Of course, you can drop down to a lesser time frame to trade, so instead of using daily data to track your stocks with the trading system, you can move down to a lesser tracking time frame by using intra-day trading charts and trade the setups from the intra-day charts.

In the end what did this trader do? Did he chose to trade intra-day with intra-day charts?

No, this trader merely shifted his focus to an outbreak system of price and volume with a cheap software costing less than $500 and has been enjoying his trading ever since.

So if you are a trader, and are looking to work out a trading system with a software, consider your own trading psychology and risk profiling, and how often you like trading action.

About the Author: Peter Lim is a Certified Financial Planner. He is the author of “Swing Trading for Gigantic Profits” which reveals how you can be a winning swing trader at

He also provides free resources on profitable trading methods at


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Oil spill hits Australia’s Sunshine coastline

Oil spill hits Australia’s Sunshine coastline

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Sunday, March 15, 2009

200,000 litres of oil leaked into waters off the coast of Brisbane from the Pacific Adventurer when their fuel tanks were damaged in rough seas on Wednesday. The figure is about ten times higher than the original estimate of twenty thousand litres of oil. The devastating diesel oil spill has spread along 60 kilometres (37 miles) of the Queensland coast. In addition, 31 containers with 620 tonnes of ammonium nitrate fertiliser flew overboard during the violent storm.

Questions are being asked why the Hong Kong cargo ship was out in seas with nine meter waves caused by Cyclone Hamish, a Category 5 tropical cyclone, as well as why the fertiliser containers were not properly secured. One of the overboard containers ruptured the hull of the Pacific Adventurer, causing between 30 to 100 tonnes of oil to spew from the severely damaged ship.

If the ammonium nitrate mixes with the heavy oil, an explosion could occur. None of the containers have been recovered. Some of these may float, but it is believed that they may have sunk which then may cause algal blooms.

Disaster zones have been declared at Bribie and Moreton Islands, and along the Sunshine coast.

The vessel’s owner, Swire Shipping, reported that a second leak began on Friday, when the ship began listing after docking at Hamilton for repairs. “As full soundings of the vessel’s tanks were being taken at the port to determine how much oil had leaked from the vessel, a small quantity of fuel oil escaped from the Pacific Adventurer,” it stated. The ship was brought upright, and a recovery vessel was used to suck up the oil from the water. The leak produced a 500m-long oil slick down the Brisbane River. Booms were placed around this oil spill so that a skimmer could clean up the second spill.

Swire Shipping could face clean up costs of AU$100,000 a day as well as fines up to AU$1.5million (US$977,000; £703,000) if found guilty of environmental breaches or negligence.

Sunshine Coast beaches are slowly starting to be reopened. The beach of Mooloolaba was still closed following reports of burning sensations from swimmers. 12 beaches remain closed; however, 13 have been reopened.

Over 300 state government and council workers are using buckets, rakes and spades in the clean up effort. Sunshine Coast Mayor Bob Abbott says the majority will be gone by Sunday afternoon. The full environmental impact on wildlife is not yet known. One turtle and seven pelicans have been found covered in oil.

There are concerns that the drinking water of Moreton Island is at risk, as the island uses water from the underground water table near the oil spill site.

“Every bucketload of contaminated sand has to be removed from the island by barge, and each bucketload from a front-end loader weighs about one tonne. It’s just an impossible task,” said Mr Trevor Hassard of the Tangalooma Dolphin Education Centre.

The commercial fishing industry has suffered from the incident. Trawlers won’t resume operations until Sunday evening, and any catches will be tested for human consumption.