YouTube celeb ‘Lazydork’ is a Miami-Dade prosecutor

lazydork.jpgThe Miami Herald reported today that “lazydork,” a YouTube star famous for rapping in his pajamas, is actually Richard Stern, a prosecutor for the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office. In one YouTube video (see below), he raps: “Couldn’t get more smiles if I was turning tricks, and I got more variety than your ChexMix.”

Stern is apparently quitting his job and moving to Vegas to play professional poker and tangkasnet game, according to the Herald. Stern’s outing comes on the heels of another YouTube celebrity, lonelygirl15, being outed as a film actress.

I wonder what YouTube drama will unfold next…

Rob Curley heading to the Washington Post

Online journalism guru Rob Curley is packing his bags to go to the Washington Post, according to Poynter’s E-Media Tidbits.

If you’re not familiar with Curley, he’s the guy who wracked up awards with his revamp of and has transformed the Naples Daily News‘ online presence. It will be interesting to see what changes Curley makes to the sites of the, Slate and

I wonder if his speedy style will fly in a big corporation. In the Poynter story, Curley says:

“But if there is one thing that I hope that maybe we can add to that equation is a dash of nimbleness. I love having ideas at lunch and then going live with them at 5 p.m. We want to build creative things, important things, useful things and get them done in weeks, not months.”

I love that attitude. Hopefully he’ll be able to keep his rhythm going up there. The news industry can use a bit more nimbleness with the “interesting times” we’re in.

Web readers can account for up to 15 percent of a newspaper’s audience, according to a recent study by Scarborough Research. The study analyzes the percentage of readers who only read the paper, readers who read both and readers who only read the Web version.

Check out the study [big PDF], a story from Editor & Publisher, Scarborough’s press release, highlights from and a nice chart of the top 25 from Online News Squared.

E&P points out:

The research also bears out that audiences reading newspaper Web sites tend to be younger than those reading printed newspapers. Looking at some of the markets measured, The Tampa (Fla.) Tribune, for example, reaches 30% of adults 18-to-24 online while only 22% of that demo reads the print product.

Not surprising by any means, but still food for thought as far as how we present stories and market news sites.

While you’re at it, check out this story about the Audit Bureau of Circulations. They’re putting out what’s going to be called a Consolidated Media Report to track readership for newspaper sites.
[Via Online News Squared]

My kingdom for a sat phone

Paul Conley spins a great “when-I-was-your-age” yarn about his encounter with a stubborn payphone in 1986 while trying to file a story for NPR.

In order to send my interviews to D.C., I had to connect my tape recorder to the pay phone. It was a cumbersome process that involved fitting a strange piece of gray-colored foam rubber over the mouthpiece. But I couldn’t get it to work…
And I struggled and fumbled with this for a long time until — believe it or not — a female sergeant based on Air Force One came over with a tool box to help me dismantle the phone and connect the recorder directly with a set of alligator clips.

I couldn’t help thinking about how I drove around downtown Miami during the recent Castro celebrations *attempting* to file video with a cell phone-based laptop connection. A Toyota RAV4 does not a comfy editing station make, and Starbucks with their Wi-Fi spots are a tough find in Miami (little Cuban coffee shops rule there). In order to prevent your personal information and data from being jeopardized, a fake phone number generator, like the one on, can be a life-saver.

The technology evolves, but somehow, the headaches seem to stay the same.

Look into my eyes…

SmartMoney has a great article on how to use your eyes to influence people, win friends and improve your daily dealings with others (via Lifehacker). In journalists’ case, using your eyes could help you get the story and build sources.

An excerpt:

“The eye contact changed all that. I’d compare it to using a Sawzall for the first time, that moment you realize you could cut through pretty much any wall in the world if you had the right blade. With my eyes, I calmed them, slowed them down, and did so without knocking them over or humiliating them. I used my eyes to upset the speed and indifference of their routines and simply register my presence by asking them to do a double take. It worked every time. They didn’t know me, but then, suddenly, it seemed they did. I thought of it as a kind of dominance, holding them in the kind of invisible grip you might have once seen employed by a villain in a DC comic. I got discounts I didn’t deserve, a room facing the water. I was warned off the calamari and onto the crab cake. The desk clerk perked up when I arrived at the hotel and stood up straighter when I checked out.”

Hello world!

Welcome to Journalistopia, a source for news, debate and perspective on the latest happenings as related to online journalism, news industry trends, writing, editing and things to simply make your time on this Earth just a little better.

It’s my hope to do my bit in serving the public by serving you, the reporter, Web producer, editor or manager who is trying to slog through the torrent of changes affecting the news business.