Monday, March 01, 2004

The New York Times Takes Itself Off this InterWeb Thingy: The absence of the entire New York Times from its website is the first visible sign of the influence of recently installed ombudsman Dan Orkent. That's right, the miracle of the entire content of the New York Times, free, daily, on your desktop is no more. We imagine the decision to take down the website went something like this.

"Hey, Punch, can I have a raise?"

"No. Fuck off. Who let you in here?"

"Uhm, I'm Danny. The ombudsman."

"Ombudsman? Is that yiddish? Can you get me an egg-cream?'

"No. I do something like represent the interests of the readers of the paper. You told Bill Keller he could hire me."

"Are you still here?"

"The thing is, this job is a lot harder than I thought it would be. See, I discovered that someone's been giving away all our stories on the Information Superhighway. This means that lots of people can check, and double-check stuff, and that our stories don't just disapear into the recycle-bin each day. Sort sucks and I want more money."

"Hold the fuck up. Someone's giving away our paper on the internet? Who?"

"I think we are. I'm not sure how this stuff works but that's what I've been told."

"Oh. Somone's definitely getting fired over this. Does Leslie Gelb still work here? Time to put that shit to a stop. Get me a pretzel with my egg-cream."

Hegel once said that whereas medieval man began his day with prayers, modern man begins his day with the newspaper. And post-modern man began his day with the New York Times on the web. We've entered a new era.

Update: Some have speculated that the New York Times itself may have been shut down, and that Jason Calacanis has offered to give Bill Keller a blogging position in exchange for fifty percent of the equity and his own laptop.

Update II: Uhm, nevermind. I was just typing the wrong URL into my browser.

[The Moral of This Story: Do Not Remove Organs Until the Patient Is Dead]