Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Joe Francis on Ashley Dupre's lawsuit

TMZ: Naming The Victim

Gossip site identifies celebrity's minor son as sex crime victim

APRIL 30, 2008 -- The web's leading gossip outlet,, today published the name and photo of a 14-year-old boy whom the site reported has allegedly been the victim of a sex crime.

The child is the son of a celebrity, which apparently makes his identification newsworthy for the site, which is co-owned by Time Warner's AOL and Telepictures units (and which is the media giant's only property to pay for stories and tips).

According to the "Exclusive" TMZ story, which we've reprinted below in a redacted form, the child is "at the center of a criminal investigation" and the "alleged victim of 'unlawful sex.'"

The boy, TMZ reported, was dating a 22-year-old woman whose ex-boyfriend became jealous and called Los Angeles police. As a result, the site reported, cops are examining whether "an adult [was] having sex with someone under 18."

Along with using the child's name, the site also ran a photo of the alleged victim that was taken when he was 10.

Billy Bob's Son Alleged Sex Crime Victim

Willie ThortonLaw enforcement sources tell TMZ Billy Bob Thornton's son is at the center of a criminal investigation -- the alleged victim of "unlawful sex."

Here's what we know. Willie Thornton, age 14, was dating a 22-year-old woman. Her ex-boyfriend apparently became jealous. Sources say the ex called the LAPD, informing them his former GF was having sex with a minor.

Law enforcement sources tell us there is an "active investigation" into the crime of "unlawful sex" -- translated, an adult having sex with someone under 18. We're told Willie is cooperating with the sex crimes unit. And, we're told, cops have also interviewed Billy Bob.

BTW, the picture was taken four years ago.

Tim Russert Blackballing Arianna At NBC ???

Sources close to Arianna Huffington are claiming just that.

Arianna Huffington is currently on book tour for her new political tome Right Is Wrong: How The Lunatic Fringe Hijacked America, Shredded The Constitution, And Made Us All Less Safe, in which she goes after Tim Russert (and justifiably so).

She's booked all over CNN, ABC, and CBS (but not Fox News Channel because she chose not to go on there).

And NBC?

Well, one insider says she was booked on Keith Olberman and Morning Joe to talk about her tome -- and then unbooked.

"These are shows that call her regularly to come on. And then the word came from on high that she had to be cancelled."

Arianna's accolytes are pointing the finger at Tim Russert, well known to be ridiculously thin-skinned, for blackballing her internally at NBC and not permitting her on any of the NBC network or cable outlets.

It's certainly possible, considering how much clout the Washington bureau chief wields at the company (not to mention how much profit his Meet The Press yields for the company).

NBC did confirm to me that Arianna Huffington won't be booked on any of the NBC network or cable shows past or present or future for her book.

(Interestingly, a Knopf source says the publisher was never given a definitive no. "We were just told to 'Call back tomorrow.' There was never any explanation.")

Granted Right Is Wrong is only #209 on, but Huffington pals are arguing to NBC it's a big book tour by a big name. "We get pitched countless books, and most of them don't make it on the air. And this one didn't," the network news spokesperson told me.

The spokesperson points out that Huffington has had nasty things to say about Russert "for years" through HuffPo's RussertWatch but she's still been booked on NBC shows. "Arianna must be dialing for dollars again," the spokesperson snarked.

Meanwhile, the respected Columbia Journalism Review just announced it will pick up HuffPo's RussertWatch as a regular online feature.

So what does Huffington say about Russert in her tome?

-- Russert's July 1, 2007, Meet The Press interview with Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff "was about as priapic a display as you're ever likely to see outside of a porno film or the monkey cage at the zoo, with Russert desperately trying to get Chertoff to pump up the panic meter..."

-- Russert's Meet The Press has been the Bush-Cheney "administration's top choice for push-back as its lies about Iraq were unraveling, because the White House could 'control' the message more easily there."

-- Russert is "one of the temple guards of conventional wisdom" and "a conventional wisdom zombie".

-- A 7-page scathing analysis of Russert and Meet The Press, based on this premise: "The reason the conventional wisdom survives no matter how many times its lies are exposed is that shows like Meet The Press allow their guests to go unchallenged."

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Porn Distributor Vivid Entertainment Is Releasing 'Jimi Hendrix the Sex Tape'

April 30, 2008

Vivid Entertainment claimed to have obtained a sex tape allegedly featured the late Jimi Hendrix having sex with two women and already released the tape on the net Tuesday, April 29.

" the Sex Tape" is on sale. Los Angeles-based adult entertainment company Vivid Entertainment announced it has acquired from a memorabilia collector a sex tape featuring the late guitar god and already released it for sale on the Internet on Tuesday, April 29.

The 11-minutes footage, allegedly showed a man resembling Hendrix having sex with two unidentified women, is packaged in a 45-minute DVD, titled "Jimi Hendrix the Sex Tape", by Vivid. The footage, according to a statement from Vivid, was filmed in a hotel room in the late 1960s.

The alleged sex tape, which reportedly doesn't consist of any sound and has poor lighting, will include flashbacks of the rock legend's career and retail for $39.95 in stores and via download. It will not have a Hendrix soundtrack though as Vivid did not obtain music licenses.

Vivid said in a press release, "This new movie shows that Jimi Hendrix could have been as great a porn star as he was a rock star." The film's authenticity, however, was immediately challenged by some, including the late musician's longtime girlfriend during the 1960s, Kathy Etchingham, who told the New York Times after viewing still photos taken from the footage, "It is not him" insisted "His face is too broad and nose and nostrils too wide for Jimi".

Sources who've seen the 8mm clip say Hendrix's face is only visible for a few seconds and thus they are not sure if it is really him in the tape. Vivid, in fact, was convinced the footage was the real deal after talking with the unidentified man who shot the explicit scene. The women in the film have yet to be identified.

The sex tape DVD is available at and will be put in stores starting next Tuesday, May 6. Vivid also distributed the notorious sex tape of actress and rocker , among others. As for Hendrix, he died in 1970 at the age of 27 from drug-related causes. He was considered one of the greatest and most influential guitarists in rock music history.

Jimi Hendrix Sex Tape !!!

TMZ has obtained the 40-year-old sex tape featuring Jimi Hendrix and two brunettes.....shot decades before sex tapes were all the rage.

Click to launch video!

The tape is up close, personal and raunchy. A rock 'n roll memorabilia collector found and sold it to Vivid Entertainment. Here's the deal, during the threesome, Hendrix loses his clothes but never sheds his legendary headband!

'Land of the Lost' gets a modern makeover

Get back! It's a Sleestak attack!

Fans of the kitschy adventure series Land of the Lost will remember these villainous lizard creatures with the single horn and giant eyes. The latest evolution of the species is preparing to menace Will Ferrell in a big-screen remake.

The Land of the Lost film is now shooting on multiple sound stages at Universal Studios, and the Sleestak surface in a temple where Ferrell's character and his two companions (comedian Danny McBride, Pushing Daisies' Anna Friel) are hoping a giant crystal will return them to their own dimension.

The plot involves three adults (not a dad and two kids as on TV) accidentally thrust into a realm ruled by dinosaurs, monkey-men called Pakuni and the murderous Sleestak.

Director Brad Silberling (Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events) says he fought to keep the human shape of the Sleestak from Sid & Marty Krofft's original production, and not give into the urge to render them as spindly computerized beings.

In the '70s TV show, they were guys in lime-green pajamas — and looked it. The Sleestak are much sleeker now, but the film is largely a comedy, so the guy-in-a-suit look has its charms, Silberling says. "There is a sense of humor that I loved from the original show that can only come from an actor trying to negotiate the suit. If it became CG, they'd be too perfect. For the Sleestak to remain in people's memories, it tells you that it was about who was in the suit."

One difference: Instead of toting crossbows, the Sleestak draw quills from their spines and fire them like arrows.

Marty Krofft says nostalgia is a major part of the movie's appeal: "I think they'll cheer when they see the Sleestaks."

Court rejects RIAA's 'making available' piracy argument

by Steven Musil
April 29, 2008

The recording industry's music piracy fight was dealt a setback Tuesday when a federal judge rejected the RIAA's "making available" argument in a lawsuit against a husband and wife accused of copyright infringement.

In Atlantic v. Howell, Judge Neil V. Wake denied the labels' motion for summary judgment in a 17-page decision (PDF), allowing the suit to proceed to trial. The argument--that merely the act of making music files available for download constituted copyright infringement--has been the basis for the Recording Industry Association of America's legal battle against online music piracy.

The RIAA sued husband and wife Pamela and Jeffrey Howell for copyright infringement in 2006, claiming the couple had used Kazaa to make copyrighted files available for download. In a deposition, Jeffrey Howell admitted loading the file-sharing software onto his computer and that the songs listed in the complaint were for personal use but that he had not placed the files in the program's shared folder. He said that the recordings were copies made from CDs he owned placed on the computer for personal use and not copies downloaded from Kazaa.

He also argued that that he was not the one sharing the files, but that it was the computer that was sharing the files.

While the couple lacks legal representation, the Electronic Frontier Foundation said it filed an amicus brief on behalf of the couple (PDF). The EFF argued against the RIAA's "making available" position, saying in a statement that it "amounts to suing someone for attempted distribution, something the Copyright Act has never recognized."

Judge Wake apparently agreed with that position.

"The court agrees with the great weight of authority that section 106(3) is not violated unless the defendant has actually distributed an unauthorized copy of the work to a member of the public," wrote the judge in his order. "Merely making an unauthorized copy of a copyrighted work available to the public does not violate a copyright holder's exclusive right of distribution."

The EFF called the order the "most decisive rejection yet of the recording industry's 'making available' theory of infringement."

Monday, April 28, 2008

MySpace wins suit against 'spam king'

April 28, 2008

Sanford Wallace, the so-called spam king, has often been accused of sending annoying messages that are typically ignored by the recipient. Perhaps he considered a series of court orders as something he could blow off.

If he did, he was wrong. MySpace has won a legal judgment against Wallace after he failed numerous times to turn over documents or even to show up for court, according to records obtained by CNET

In March of last year, MySpace filed suit against Wallace alleging he launched a phishing scam to fraudulently access MySpace profiles. Wallace was also accused of spamming thousands of MySpace users with unwanted advertisements and luring them to his Web sites.

To say Wallace, who could not be reached for comment, failed to mount a vigorous defense would be an understatement.

According to records filed on April 15 with U.S. District Court in the Central District of California, Wallace was ordered numerous times to turn over documents requested by MySpace and provide a deposition. A MySpace representative did not respond to an interview request.

Each time, MySpace waited and each time Wallace failed to comply. Early on, Wallace informed MySpace he was having a hard time finding legal counsel. Soon after, he said he couldn't comply because he was unaware of his court dates; he wasn't accepting mail or signing for packages and that's why he missed receiving notifications.

The court did not accept his reasons as a valid excuse, but continued to give him chances to comply. Nothing worked. After Wallace continuously failed to appear or respond to filing deadlines, the court issued a default judgment against Wallace.

"It is...a defendant's responsibility to respond to discovery, obey court orders, and avoid dilatory tactics," the court wrote in its order. "Taking all of the above factors into account, a default is appropriate. The court finds that Wallace's noncompliance is due to willfulness, fault, or bad faith...Wallace has had every opportunity to avoid the sanction of default. (He) has never provided any explanation for his behavior to the court."

By now, Wallace should know his way around a courtroom.

He has been sued by the Federal Trade Commission and companies such as AOL and Concentric Network Corp. In May 2006, Wallace and his company were ordered by a federal court to turn over $4,089,500.

Media wants access to R. Kelly porn case
Lawyers for two newspapers filed an emergy motion to the court

The Associated Press
April 28, 2008

Lawyers for two newspapers and The Associated Press are seeking sealed court records and transcripts related to R. Kelly’s pornography case with an emergency motion filed in the Illinois Supreme Court.

The 41-year-old R&B singer has pleaded not guilty to charges that he videotaped himself having sex with an underage girl. His trial is scheduled to start in Chicago May 9.

The Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times and the AP want the Supreme Court to order the Cook County Circuit Court to unseal the records immediately. Their motion was filed Monday.

Judge Vincent Gaughan (GAWN) has said he’s trying to protect Kelly’s rights and prevent information from influencing prospective jurors.

The New York Times
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April 29, 2008

WB Network to Return as a Web Site

The WB brand, born as a broadcast network in 1995 and closed in 2006, will return as an online video Web site, combining short original series with classic shows, the Warner Brothers Television Group announced Monday., and a complementary site for children called, are part of a “digital destination” strategy by Warner Brothers, a subsidiary of Time Warner, to tailor Web sites to specific audiences.

In trying to compete for consumers’ time, Warner and other media companies have sought new outlets for content, sometimes bypassing the traditional network structure and creating broadband Internet channels.

“My 20-year-old daughter and her friends are watching ‘One Tree Hill’ and ‘Pushing Daisies,’ but not on television,” Bruce Rosenblum, the president of the Warner television group, said. “They’re watching on laptops and cellphones. Here’s the interesting part — to them, that is television.”

The Web site, to start in a test form next month, will focus on those consumers — 16- to 34-year-olds, particularly women — with free ad-supported episodes of “Gilmore Girls,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Smallville” and other series once on WB.

The WB broadcast network merged with UPN to form a new brand, the CW, in 2006. Warner and the CBS Corporation are partners for the network, which has suffered ratings declines in its second season.

Episodes of other Warner productions, most notably “Friends” and “The O.C.,” will also be streamed online.

Along with archived shows, Warner hopes to attract users with made-for-Internet video series, including ones headed by McG, who is best known for directing the “Charlie’s Angels” films and whose real name is Joseph McGinty Nichol, and Josh Schwartz, the executive producer of “The O.C.” and “Gossip Girl.”

McG is working with production teams on two series, “Sorority Forever” and “Exposed,” both set at college; Mr. Schwartz is developing a music program. will face competition from other companies that are producing short-form series and streaming shows on the Internet.

“It’s very hard to form new destinations online,” an analyst at JupiterResearch, Bobby Tulsiani, said, noting that YouTube is still by far the dominant video Web site.

Mr. Tulsiani said a syndication model, where videos are made available on multiple sites, appears more promising for media companies. The online video site Hulu, a venture between NBC Universal and the News Corporation, has adopted the model. Similarly, Warner has signed partnerships with Comcast and AOL to share its video.

Mr. Rosenblum said it was reasonable to expect that content would be shared with other sites. He also said shows from other studios could appear on

The television arm of Warner entered the digital realm with, a popular entertainment brand, in 2005, and MomLogic, a site for mothers, in 2007. In creating the Web sites, the production division of Warner is acting as its own distributor. Mr. Rosenblum said television production in partnership with television networks would remain his division’s primary and most profitable business for the foreseeable future.

At the same time, “we can’t stick our head in the sand and not acknowledge that there’s an evolution taking place,” he said. “We are taking advantage of the opportunity to go directly to the consumer.”

Fox Executives Researching Ways to Improve American Idol

By Ben Grossman -- Broadcasting & Cable


American Idol and the executives from its network don’t live in a Fox hole -- they’ve seen the ratings. The numbers are down, but Fox execs aren’t just standing around staring aimlessly off into space like Idol robo-contestant David Archuleta.

Now, let’s be clear: It’s comical that anyone thinks Fox should hit the panic button for a seven-year-old show that still gets 25 million viewers despite making kids sing Dolly Parton songs with a straight face.

I got my grubby little fingers on an online market research survey Fox put into play last week, and its execs are looking at every aspect of how to plug this ratings leak. The network has been doing online polling for three years because it is cheap and easy, but now the stakes are getting higher as viewership gets lower.

“We’re not in denial,” Fox scheduling chief Preston Beckman told me. “It’s still the biggest show on TV, but that doesn’t mean there are things we can’t do. The feedback from this year you’ll probably see on the show next year.”

The online survey asks basic questions like whether viewers like the show more or less than last year. But it is the specific questions that indicate where the network is targeting change.

Beckman told me months ago that Fox is looking at tweaking Idol’s early stages next year, so that is nothing new. Therefore, the questions about the length and the tone of the auditions and subsequent Hollywood round are unsurprising.

But one question in the survey gives clues about one route they may be considering. The question asks, “Suppose the first few weeks of American Idol started in Hollywood with flashbacks of the auditions; would that increase or decrease your enjoyment of American Idol?”

Now I don’t really understand what that means, and I watch the show every week. It sounds like some trippy thing from ABC’s underrated prophet-drama, Eli Stone. Then again, anytime you mention the word “flashbacks” and Paula Abdul is involved, good television will probably ensue.

While the survey probes whether there is too much or too little banter between the judges, other questions drill down specifically on host Ryan Seacrest. Is there too much Ryan? Is there not enough Ryan? Should he bring back “Seacrest Out!” to close every show? OK, that last one’s not really in there, but you know my vote.

Beckman says the polling is used to probe countless what-if scenarios. And if the results go strongly one way or the other, they are taken to producers and Fox alternative chief Mike Darnell.

Several questions in the survey blatantly ask for new ideas, so this viewer will throw out a couple. First off, stop with the single-artist theme weeks. At least the ones with artists over the age of 142. I get that these are deals cut to coincide with new albums dropping like this week’s Neil Diamond theme. But most of these contestants probably think “Sweet Caroline” was one of Elliot Spitzer’s girls.

Also, my wife doesn’t bring much enjoyment to my marriage, but she did point out recently that virtually every American Idol performance over the years is on YouTube. That got me thinking, as Fox tries to remind everyone how good the talent is on this show, that it’s time for a contest where fans can pick the best single performance of all-time. It would present great digital tie-ins to drive Web and mobile traffic and remind fans that the show’s legacy is more Kelly Clarkson than Sanjaya.

Scott Weiland Is Going to Jail

Scott Weiland is Going to JailRock star Scott Weiland has just been sentenced to 192 hours in county jail for his November DUI arrest. This is Weiland's second DUI offense. He has until May 28 to serve the sentence.

Scott, who was not present in court today, entered a no contest plea through his attorney, Anthony Brooklier. The former Velvet Revolver singer was also ordered to complete an 18-month alcohol program and pay almost $2,000 in fines. He will be put on a four-year summary probation.

Weiland was charged with one misdemeanor count of driving under the influence of alcohol with a prior conviction, and with an allegation that he refused a chemical test as required by law. We are told he was over the legal limit of .08%, but not by much.

According to the police report, he failed the field sobriety tests and refused to take a blood or urine test. He was booked for DUI and released on $40,000 bail.

Spitzer Call Girl Ashley Dupre Files $10Million Lawsuit Against 'Girls Gone Wild' Founder

Ashley Alexandra Dupre

April 28, 2008

By Hollie McKay


Ashley Dupre became a household name after the exposure of her alleged sex-service relationship with New York's former governor, Eliot Spitzer. But while his life and career appear to be in ruins in the wake of the randy revelations, Dupre's bank balance may soon be booming.

One source of cash could be the $10 million lawsuit she has filed against the founder of "Girls Gone Wild" in federal court in Miami Monday, according to The Associated Press.

Dupre claims that Joe Francis is exploiting her name and image from video footage, saying she was only 17 when the videos were taken in 2003 in Miami Beach and not old enough to sign a contract. Francis couldn't be reached for comment.

The news comes on the heels of reports that the New Jersey-born call girl has been offered big bucks from numerous men's magazines to get down and dirty, including a $1 million paycheck from Francis to take the cover of his first-ever "Girls Gone Wild" magazine this month. (Francis rescinded the offer once he realized he already had several films in which Dupre appeared.)

The now 22-year-old only got a T-shirt for flashing her flesh in those videos from 2003. So thanks to "Client #9," Ashley's earning power has come a long way. And now, Francis' good friend Dennis Hof, owner of the big-wig BunnyRanch brothel in Nevada, wants to be hooked up with the sex scandal star, too.

"I've offered Ashley a quarter of million salary to come and work for me here," Hof told Pop Tarts, adding that he was hoping to negotiate the deal with Dupre in the next few weeks. "I've also offered a free lifetime pass for Mr. Spitzer; we're still waiting for a response.

"We call him the 'No Glove Love Gov,' but we've given out passes to people who are a lot more important and high-profile than he is," the hooker-house owner added.

So if Ashley does decide to bounce on board the BunnyRanch, Hof claims that he will turn her image from "dirty" to dazzling — but he had some harsh words for her, too.

"My girls are rock stars; they have class. Right now, Ashley is just a dirty girl who knew that what she was doing in New York and D.C. was illegal," he said.

"If she wanted to be in the sex trade, she could have come to Nevada where it's legal. So she deserves whatever she gets — but what she doesn’t deserve is fame. She and Eliot should both be in jail where they can write dirty letters to each other."

Dupre’s 15 minutes of fame aren't up quite yet. Gentleman’s Club Headquarters New York (known as HQ) is holding a contest this Thursday in search of the sexiest Dupre duplicate.

“Ms. Dupre has become an instant sex symbol, and men would happily pay to see her dance,” said Steve Hahn, General Manager of HQ. “We’re giving them the next best thing by combing the city for a girl who looks just like her.”

Dupre was identified in March as a prostitute named "Kristen" who had been involved with Spitzer, who has since resigned.

The reigning “almost Ashley Dupre” will be judged by "The Sopranos" star Dan Grimaldi, Big Apple icon "The Naked Cowboy" and a very special surprise guest (could it be Client #9?).

While the winner won't exactly get to tryst with a high-profile politician of her own, she will earn $500 and a two-week dancing contract at HQ.

Meanwhile, aspiring singer Dupre has enlisted top music manager Jerry Blair, who once oversaw Mariah Carey's comeback, The New York Daily News reports.

"Ashley has a delicate situation," an insider told the News. "She can't do anything that generates income until she works out a deal" over potential charges.

Two sources close to the situation confirmed for the News that Blair had been representing Dupre to labels, but once source said "Every label passed" while another countered "There has been quite a bit of interest."

Dupre Goes Wild on Joe Francis

Ashley Dupre filed a lawsuit today against "Girls Gone Wild" founder Joe Francis, claiming she never gave GGW permission to use her name and likeness to advertise videos -- and she's asking for $10 mil.
Joe Francis, Ashle
Dupre, the call girl at the center of the Gov. Eliot Spitzer scandal, alleges in the lawsuit that GGW reps approached her while she was "socializing" at Miami's Chesterfield Hotel back in 2003, plied her with booze, and -- once she was drunk -- got her to flash her moneymakers.

Once Dupre became famous, GGW released the video and used it to promote the launch of their new magazine. She was only 17 at the time, she argues, so she was not old enough and "did not understand the magnitude" of what she was doing when she was signing a release ... drunk. But, as TMZ first reported, she had a fake ID that said otherwise.

UPDATE: Francis issued the following statement to TMZ: "We were very surprised and in fact amazed today that Ms. Dupree filed a lawsuit against Girls Gone Wild. We have not publicly released any new video of Ms. Dupree, due to corporate policy of not using footage of individuals younger than 18. It is incomprehensible that Ms. Dupree could claim she did not give her consent to be filmed by Girls Gone Wild, when in fact we have videotape of her giving consent, while showing her identification."


'Girls Gone Wild': Video proves Dupre agreed to appear

MIAMI — The founder of Girls Gone Wild released a video Tuesday that he said proved the call girl involved in a scandal that brought down New York's former governor agreed to be filmed in 2003.

The release came one day after series founder Joe Francis and his companies were sued for $10 million in Miami federal court by Ashley Alexandra Dupre, who claims she was only 17 at the time and too young to sign a binding contract. Dupre, now 22, also accused Francis of exploiting her image and name on various Internet sites.

In the new release, Dupre appears covered by a terrycloth towel and gives her name as Amber Arpaio. An unseen questioner asks if she is 18.

"Yes I am," Dupre answers in a strong Southern accent.

"Do you know what Girls Gone Wild is?" the questioner asks.

"Yes I do," she replies with a laugh.

"Can I use this on Girls Gone Wild ?" she is asked.

"Of course you can," Dupre answers.

The video also displays a New Jersey driver's license with the Amber Arpaio name and a birth date that would have made her appear to be in her 20s.

A lawyer and public relations firm representing Dupre did not immediately return telephone calls and e-mails seeking comment.

Dupre rocketed to fame in March when she surfaced as a high-priced call girl in the Emperors Club VIP prostitution ring that involved New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who resigned soon after the scandal broke. Dupre, going by the name "Kristen," met Spitzer at least once at a swanky Washington hotel, according to court documents.

In her lawsuit, Dupre said she was on spring break in Miami Beach in 2003 when she was approached by Girls Gone Wild producers, given alcoholic drinks and then signed a release agreeing to appear. The series depicts women in various provocative poses or topless, often in such party locations as Mardi Gras or spring break beach towns.

Francis has said that Dupre was on the Girls Gone Wild bus for a week and made seven full-length videos. He said the video of her agreement to appear is proof that her lawsuit has no merit.

"It is incomprehensible that Ms. Dupre could claim she did not give her consent to be filmed by Girls Gone Wild , when in fact we have a videotape of her giving consent, while showing her identification," Francis said in a written statement.

After the Spitzer scandal, Francis made a public $1 million offer for Dupre to appear in one of his videos and go on a promotional tour. But he rescinded the offer after realizing he already had footage of Dupre from 2003.

Francis has other legal problems, including federal tax evasion charges pending in California and lawsuits by filed by women in Panama City, Fla., claiming they were victims of underage exploitation. Francis spent a year in jail and was released in March after pleading no contest to child abuse and prostitution charges for filming underage girls in that Panhandle beach town.

What laptop does Microsoft honcho Steve Ballmer use for his presentations ???

Vanity Fair Steals 15-Year-Old Miley Cyrus' Topless Virginity

Cuar02 Miley0806

Miley Cyrus apologized to America yesterday for appearing in a Vanity Fair photo spread, her torso wrapped only in what appeared to be a bedsheet, her hair tousled, her lips painted bright red. Viewers of her Hannah Montana are mostly aged 6-14, and their parents worry this is just another attempt to sexualize their young kids. It's true there was something unseemly about the whole thing, in particular Vanity Fair gloating in its Cyrus profile that "the topless but demure portrait accompanying this article could be seen as another baby step, as it were, toward a more mature profile" and asking, in a caption, "Um, was Cyrus—or Disney—at all anxious about this shot?" But there's also something absurd about the outraged reaction to the whole thing, including allegations of exploitation by Disney and a parenting website suggesting readers burn Hannah Montana products in a bonfire.

Cyrus is hardly the first teenaged minor to adopt a sexual pose, however vague, in the media, and Vanity Fair is hardly the first glossy to run topless pictures of an underaged minor — the Times' T Magazine did that in December in a move staunchly defended by the editor of the main Times Magazine.

Cusl04 Miley0806

The difference between Cyrus and teen stars who have gotten away with this sort of thing is that Cryus is supposed to be making $1 billion annually for the Walt Disney Company by selling a wholesome image to younger girls.

A Disney spokeswoman called the Vanity Fair shoot "a situation was created to deliberately manipulate a 15-year-old in order to sell magazines." As opposed to, say, a situation created to deliberately manipulate a 15-year-old in order to sell a television show or the products advertised in them.

Cuar03 Miley0806

Cyrus seems to have no trouble appearing in sexualized pictures without Annie Leibovitz whispering in her ear, as at the Vanity Fair shoot (where her mom and other minders were present). Pictures surfaced last week of Cyrus exposing her bra and midriff and cuddling with a boyfriend. Not that the star should be ashamed of her tame teenaged experimentation.

This isn't about exploitation or morality. It's about, on the one hand, a move studio looking to preserve the profits that come from selling a particular character increasingly divorced from the actress who plays her, and on the other a set of parents freaked out about anything remotely sexual and unwilling to serve as an intermediary between the media and their children.

Sunday, April 27, 2008
Social networking applications can pose security risks

The Associated Press
Sunday, April 27, 2008

CHICAGO -- Sarah Brown is unusually cautious when it comes to social networking. The college sophomore doesn't have a MySpace page and, while she's on Facebook, she does everything she can to keep her page as private as she can.

"I don't want to have to worry about all the different online scandals and problems," says Brown, an education major at St. Joseph College in Connecticut. She'd like to control her personal information and keep it out of the hands of identity thieves or snooping future employers. "It's just common sense."

It sounds like her info is locked down and airtight. But is it?

Turns out, even the privacy-conscious Sarah Browns of the world freely hand over personal information to perfect strangers. They do so every time they download and install what's known as an "application," one of thousands of mini-programs on a growing number of social networking sites that are designed by third-party developers for anything from games and sports teams to trivia quizzes and virtual gifts.

Brown, for instance, has installed applications on her Facebook page for Boston Bruins fans and another that allows her to post "bumper stickers" on her own page and those of her friends. It's a core way to communicate on social networking sites, which allow friends to create pages about themselves and post photos and details about their lives and interests.

People often think Facebook profiles and sometimes MySpace pages, if they're set as private, are only available to friends or specific groups, such as a university, workplace, or even a city.

But that's not true if they use applications. On Facebook, for instance, applications can only be downloaded if a user checks a box allowing its developers to "know who I am and access my information," which means everything on a profile, except contact info. Given little thought, agreeing to the terms has become a matter of routine for the nearly 70 million Facebook users worldwide who use applications to spruce up their pages and to flirt, play and bond with friends online.

News Corp.'s MySpace, which has about 117 million unique visitors each month, recently added an applications platform, giving developers access to the profiles of anyone who downloads them. Unlike Facebook, though, MySpace users don't have to include their names on their profiles.

So what do these third-parties do with the information? Sometimes, they use it to connect users with similar interests. Sometimes, they use it to target ads, based on demographics such as gender and age (something Facebook and MySpace also do).

Facebook and MySpace say they hold application developers to strict standards _ and boot them if they don't comply. They also point out that some information, such as e-mail addresses and phone numbers, aren't made available.

But experts who track online security issues think there's too much personal information flying around out there, with few guarantees that it's safe. They also think social networkers have little understanding where their information goes and how it's used _ and as a result, have a false sense of security.

"I suspect that there's a whole lot of clicking without a lot of thinking," says Mary Madden, a senior research specialist at the Pew Internet & American Life Project who studies privacy issues. "So much of this sharing happens in a way that users don't see the consequences. It's kind of a big, black hole."

Part of the risk stems from Facebook applications being created by anyone, some of them tech-related companies and others individuals with know-how. And they could be anywhere in the world, as is Jayant Agarwalla, co-founder of Facebook's popular Scrabulous application, a takeoff on the game Scrabble.

Reached by e-mail, he says Scrabulous does use demographic information to target ads that show up as a person plays the game. But Agarwalla, who's based in India, stresses that that information is provided in "real time" and not stored. "In my humble opinion, users have nothing to worry about," he says.

Some would argue that it's much like trusting an online vendor with your credit card information.

Still, it's an honor system, says Adrienne Felt, a computer science major at the University of Virginia. A Facebook user herself, she decided to research the site's applications and even created her own so she could see how it worked.

Most of the developers Felt polled said they either didn't need or use the information available to them and, if they did, accessed it only for advertising purposes.

But, in the end, Felt says there's really nothing stopping them from matching profile information with public records. It also could be sold or stolen. And all of that could lead to serious matters such as identity theft.

"People seem to have this idea that, when you put something on the Internet, there should be some privacy model out there _ that there's somebody out there that's enforcing good manners. But that's not true," Felt says.

Last year, Facebook users revolted when the company started using a tool called Beacon, which tracked its users' purchases and actions at dozens of Web sites and then broadcast the data on the pages of the users' friends.

Beacon has since been scaled back.

By comparison, the issue of personal information going to application developers, both on Facebook and now MySpace, has remained relatively quiet.

Jonathan Gaugler, a 26-year-old New Yorker, is one who finds targeted ads on his Facebook page a bit too invasive.

"Getting married? Do your registry here!" read one recent ad that showed up. Another on his fiancee's page was advertising for egg donors for fertility clinics.

"Creepy," Gaugler says.

He keeps his Facebook activity to a minimum as a result _ and rarely downloads an application because he doesn't want to be further targeted.

But many others are much less cautious, seeing the risk of social networking "as low and the reward as high," says Patricia Sanchez Abril, an assistant professor at the University of Miami's business school who studies privacy law.

"It is the chosen mode of communication of everyone they know. So if you're not in it, you're just not in the loop," she says. "There's a lot of peer pressure."

What they don't realize, she adds, is that there is little legal backup if their information is used in a way they didn't intend.

"This is an area that's completely unregulated. Yes, there are contracts. But if the receiving end doesn't abide by the contract, you're still out of luck," Abril says.

And applications, she notes, are only one worry when it comes to online threats.

A social networker's friends can, for instance, give access to personal information or photos in a profile. That happened to the call girl involved in the recent sex scandal with former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer.

Researchers at Indiana University also published a study last year showing how they "scraped" information from students' social network profiles. Posing as people's friends, they then used the information to fool the students into providing their university ID and password on a bogus external Web site.

Whether the profile is private or not, users should limit the information they post, said Tom Jagatic, one of the researchers and now a senior information technology consultant at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

It's good advice, says Jeremy Miller, a fraud investigator based in Nashville, Tenn., but he wonders how many will heed it. He uses MySpace and sees people who routinely list everything from their income to phone numbers on their profiles _ and don't even bother to make their profiles private.

"It's kind of a status symbol, so privacy takes a back seat," says Miller, who works for Kroll Inc., a risk management consulting firm. "It's much like people saying you shouldn't carry your Social Security card around in your wallet.

"But a lot of people still do it."

TV crew members still feeling effects of writers strike

Many can't find work with production down, and their bills are piling up. Some are facing foreclosure and bankruptcy.


The writers strike ended two months ago, but many TV crew members in Hollywood are still idle because of a sharp contraction in production. Location manager Ed Lippman has struggled to find work in the aftermath of the strike and was forced to declare bankruptcy in the face of his growing debt.

By Richard Verrier
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

5:52 PM PDT, April 27, 2008

The writers strike ended two months ago. But many in Hollywood remain on the brink.

Some are at risk of losing their homes. Some can't afford groceries. Others have filed for bankruptcy. Still others struggle to work enough hours to hold onto their health insurance.

Across Los Angeles, many crew members who work behind the scenes and on the sets of television shows and movies are still quaking from the temblor of the 100-day writers strike that shut down scripted TV production.

Blame the aftershocks. Networks have sharply curtailed the number of TV pilots this year, continuing a trend toward ordering fewer shows for the new season.

The shows that did return are filming 20% to 40% fewer episodes. And in Los Angeles County, location permits for sitcoms and dramas since the strike ended have plunged 51% and 35% from last year, respectively, according to FilmL.A., which handles film permits.

Although hard figures are not available, union officials say that thousands of crew members who normally would be busy at this time of year are still idled due to the sharp contraction in television production. Some union locals report a quarter of their members are sitting at home.

Karen Hartjen is one. She can't bring herself to open the utility bills lying on her kitchen table in Simi Valley.

The 53-year-old assistant prop master has been out of work since early November, when a string of jobs on TV shows such as "CSI: New York" and "Medium" came to a halt after the writers walked out.

Although Hartjen is accustomed to earning $100,000 a year, she is now $10,000 in debt and her home is threatened with foreclosure. She has turned to her church and the Salvation Army for help with groceries.

"I've been in this business for two decades, and I've never experienced anything like this," Hartjen said. "I'm just fighting for my life."

It will take several more months before TV production - and the jobs that go along with them - returns to normal levels. said Jack Kyser, chief economist for the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. And that's assuming there is no actors strike. "It's going to be a nerve-racking year for below-the-line workers," he said.

The downturn comes at a tough time for Hollywood's blue-collar employees, who are grappling with what many economists view as a nationwide recession, as well as a steady drain of film jobs to New Mexico, Louisiana and other states offering production incentives not available in California. Michigan upped the stakes recently by offering film producers 40 cents back for every dollar they spend shooting in the state.

Adding to the anxiety among so-called below-the-line workers -- such as technicians, carpenters and makeup artists -- are fears that they could suffer a double whammy if actors and studios fail to reach a new contract by June 30. Studios, which have spent months preparing for a walkout by actors, began negotiations with the Screen Actors Guild two weeks ago.

The parties a few days ago agreed to extend the talks an additional week. Nonetheless, each side remains far apart on a number of issues, including how much money actors should earn when shows are distributed online.

"Any possibility of an actors strike weighs heavily on the minds of our people," said Ed Brown, business agent for Local 44 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees. The local represents set decorators, special-effects workers and prop makers who are among more than 30,000 Hollywood workers represented by the union.

Brown estimates that about 25% of the local's 5,000 West Coast members are still looking for jobs -- double the normal level for this time of year.

Without any income, they've turned for help to charitable groups such as the Writers Guild Foundation, which has raised money for crew members, and the Actors Fund, which provides financial help to economically distressed workers in the entertainment industry. The latter, with help from the Writers Guild Foundation, has provided more than $1 million in assistance to nearly 700 people since November. Recipients receive payments of $500 to $2,000 to help make car payments, mortgage payments or pay utility bills.

The Actors Fund has been clocking about 20 calls a day for emergency help, double the usual volume.

"A lot of people are trying to dig themselves out of a hole," said Keith McNutt, western region director for the Actors Fund. "They're desperate."

The reason: Work has been slow to rebound.

Most TV shows couldn't return immediately after the writers reached a new contract with studios because of the four- to six-week period it takes for most shows to complete scripts, rehire crews and prep locations for shooting. When production did resume, however, there were many fewer shows, and thus fewer job opportunities for crew members.

The downturn has been partially offset by a 50% upswing in feature film production, a possible sign that studios are ramping up production to complete films before June 30, when the actors contract expires. Studios have braced for a possible walkout by juggling their slates so that most films would wrap up by the contract deadline.

But the increase has not been enough to fill the paucity of jobs. Indeed, an actors strike would be more debilitating than a walkout by writers because it would shut down most production, a nightmare scenario for people such as Ed Lippman.

"I can't even think what might happen to me if SAG goes out," says Lippman, a location manager. The 16-year industry veteran has been unemployed since November, when his last show, the NBC cop drama "Life," shut down after filming only 11 episodes.

When the strike ended, Lippman figured he would return to work on "Life," but NBC chose not to resume filming until June. For the first time in his career, he wasn't getting any calls for pilot work, and neither were his colleagues.

After maxing out his credit cards, Lippman, 42, did something he never imagined he would do: He filed for personal bankruptcy this month.

"It was hard to accept. I thought, 'How could this happen?,' " Lippman said.

Phillip Gordon has been wondering the same thing.

After four months of unemployment, the 38-year-old prop maker and general foreman returned to work a week ago, overseeing construction of the set for the comedy "Mostly Ghostly," an upcoming movie based on the R.L. Stine book series. The job pays $17 an hour, well below his usual rate, and requires a two-hour commute from his home near Palmdale to the set in Playa Vista.

workersSound effects specialist Dominique Tabach of Valencia, with her prop bag, has been hit hard by the fallout from the writers strike. The cutback in TV production has meant that she is working far fewer hours and risks losing her union health insurance benefits.

Gordon has little choice. He's four months behind on his variable-rate mortgage. His payments ballooned to $3,700 from $2,700 a month in January, shortly after he lost his job on the set of the next "Star Trek" movie. To stay afloat, he's sold off tools at swap meets and mowed his neighbor's lawn.

"I don't know what else to do," Gordon said.

Many crew members are in a race against the clock to keep their health insurance. Union rules require that members work at least 300 hours every six months to maintain their benefits.

After a four-month hiatus, foley artist Dominique Tabach of Valencia recently returned to work part time on the CBS drama "Numb3rs." But she has nothing else lined up.

Without additional work, Tabach, 43, is concerned that she won't accumulate enough hours to keep her union health insurance beyond September. The insurance covers herself, her 8-year-old daughter and husband, a former TV executive who recently lost his job.

"There's just not enough TV work out there," Tabach said.
Tila Tequila is back for Season Two of her "show"

Tila Tequila showed off the body that has audiences wanting to take another "Shot At Love" on a Santa Monica, CA area beach.

The second season of Tila's bisexual reality dating show premiered last night with the MySpace queen and former Playboy model looking for love with sixteen straight men and sixteen lesbians.

"My show is about finding true love, because for me having over 2 million friends is cool but sometimes it makes it hard for me to find someone real, and someone whom I can trust and love."

So how does one begin to wade through the 32 potential suitors to find rue love? By making them perform stripteases and lap dances to gain access to the mansion of course?

If your first thought was "get to know each other with an in depth and introspective chat" you're reading the wrong blog.

Britney Spears works out at Bally's in Studio City
Kristin Cavallari, Pete Wentz, and Wilmer Valderrama



Rumer and Wal-Mart? I can't think of a better pairing!

A super-hot, not-at-all-airbrushed Rumer Willis joins the likes of Kristin Cavallari, Pete Wentz and Wilmer Valderrama in the new summer ad campaign for Op, a young men's clothing brand to be sold exclusively at Wal-Mart.

Hey, Rumer takes whatever job she can get!

Mac & PC UK version

Will Iron Man be the summer's strongman?

The industry looks to the Marvel superhero to lift it out of the doldrums.

Iron Man

By John Horn
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

April 17, 2008

HE speeds into battle in a fiery flash, laying waste to all challengers. That's not just "Iron Man" but the film's likely box-office outcome too.

From a surprise sneak peek at July's Comic-Con convention through its teaser trailer launch in October and TV spots during February's Super Bowl and "Lost" premiere, "Iron Man" has been assembling a towering wave of momentum. But is it a tsunami? When the first meaningful audience tracking surveys rolled in early last week, Paramount and Marvel Studios had to say "Iron Man" sure was looking like one.

Movie studios and exhibitors are desperate for a hit, with 2008 attendance down more than 6% compared with a year ago and last weekend's total grosses down almost 20% versus the same weekend in 2007, according to the research firm Media by Numbers. Several of the year's higher-profile releases, including films from George Clooney ("Leatherheads"), Will Ferrell ("Semi-Pro") and Jodie Foster ("Nim's Island"), all faltered. Relief from some of the summer's biggest guns -- "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" and "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" -- won't come until mid- and late May.

But when "Iron Man" hits theaters on May 2, it may single-handedly launch what is Hollywood's most important (and profitable) season and help lift the business out of its doldrums.

As is the industry habit, both Paramount and Marvel are trying to manage expectations downward. They note (accurately, as it turns out) that Iron Man is hardly as popular a comic book character as Spider-Man or Hulk, that almost all school-age kids will still be in classes when the film opens and that this weekend's "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" and May 2's "Made of Honor" will grab some of "Iron Man's" harder-to-get female patrons.

That said, some rival studio executives and producers -- having looked at "Iron Man's" strong tracking numbers -- are now saying the film could be one of the summer's top hits, especially since Paramount and Marvel have spent only 30% of their advertising dollars so far.

Directed by "Elf's" Jon Favreau, "Iron Man" stars Robert Downey Jr. as arms manufacturer Tony Stark. Captured by Middle Eastern guerrillas who force him to build a missile, a wounded Stark instead constructs a protective iron suit that allows him to escape. Once free and back in Malibu, Stark secretly refines his design, turning himself into a more peace-minded crusader. His about-face might worry longtime assistant Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow), but it really ticks off business partner Obadiah Stane (Jeff Bridges). Before long, Stark's Iron Man faces a very bad boardroom revolt.

Because the character resides in the middle rungs of Marvel's superhero ladder, below not only Spider-Man and Hulk but also X-Men and the Fantastic Four, equivalent movie comparisons are problematic. "X-Men," which helped launch the modern comic-book revival, premiered with $54.5 million in 2000. Two years later, the first "Spider-Man" opened to $114.8 million, followed a year later with "Hulk" at $62.1 million. In 2005, "The Fantastic Four" opened with receipts of $56.1 million.

All of those films except "Spider-Man" (which came out May 3) opened in the middle of the summer when only 3% of grade-school kids are still in school and 9% of college students are hitting the books. The conventional wisdom is that kids in school are less likely to go see movies during the week, and that hurts weekday and Sunday night attendance.

Still, there's telling strength hiding inside "Iron Man's" audience surveys, box-office experts say. While some "Iron Man" doubters worry that the film's female appeal is too far behind its male interest to yield a true, all-demographic blockbuster (men are almost twice as interested in "Iron Man" as are women), a close look at the numbers tells a different tale.

With 14 days to go before the PG-13 "Iron Man" opens (it will start showing in many venues a minute past midnight that Thursday night), the film's female interest is roughly comparable to where it was for "Hulk," "Transformers" (which opened to $70.5 million last July) and the R-rated "300" (which grossed $70.9 million in its premiere in March) two weeks before those films hit theaters.

And with the acclaimed Downey and the Oscar-winning Paltrow in leading roles and mostly favorable reviews expected, "Iron Man" should also draw strongly among more discriminating -- older, put less diplomatically -- moviegoers. There's little, in other words, to hold it back.

Paramount, which is marketing and distributing the movie that Marvel paid for as its first self-financed production, notes that only two non-sequels ("Spider-Man" and "The Passion of the Christ") have ever grossed more than $80 million in their first three-day weekends. Even if "Iron Man" (which cost $135 million to make) grosses $50 million in its first weekend, it will be headed toward profitability and have everybody at Paramount and Marvel beaming.

Ads for "Iron Man" say "Heroes aren't born. They're built." And Paramount and Marvel have constructed their own box-office behemoth. Don't be surprised if it takes in as much as $70 million on opening weekend.

The New York Times
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April 28, 2008

Golden Years of Television Find New Life on the Web

Is there still money to be made from “Matlock”?

Within the last few months, television distributors have opened up their libraries of classic content online, making thousands of episodes of programs like “The Twilight Zone” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” available free.

On Monday, Warner Brothers is expected to add a new twist, announcing the rebirth of the WB broadcast network as an Internet destination and offering programs like “Everwood” online.

In putting old episodes online, broadcasters are tapping into the “long tail” of niche content that the Internet has monetized. While executives are reticent about the costs involved, and while syndicated and DVD sales remain dominant sources of revenue, the repurposing of long-dead shows is creating another new revenue stream for distributors.

The online re-creation of the WB — a network that disappeared in 2006 when it merged with UPN to become the CW — will represent another step in that direction. While Warner Brothers would not confirm the plans, preferring to wait until a press conference on Monday, Bruce Rosenblum, the president of the company’s television group, said in an interview last week that “premium ad-supported digital destinations that are demographic-specific” are a key part of its strategy going forward.

Advertising-supported TV streaming sites like Hulu, Veoh and Joost are forming a time tunnel to 50 years of television — to shows like “Bewitched” and “Seinfeld” (and even 26 episodes of the 1966 drama “The Time Tunnel”).

“We have all this library content, and we’ve been surprised at how much interest there is in it,” Jeff Zucker, the chief executive of NBC Universal, said recently. “Frankly, if there is one person interested it — and there are streaming costs so you have to make sure you’re covering that — we’ve found it’s a new opportunity for our content.”

The online shows also create new payment opportunities for the writers, producers and actors of TV’s golden years. Royalties for Internet streaming were a pivotal issue in the writers’ strike that halted television production last winter. The Hollywood studios agreed to pay writers a 2 percent cut of the receipts for ad-supported streaming of all shows produced after 1977.

But online streaming isn’t making anyone rich, at least not yet. As Mitchell Hurwitz, the co-creator of “Arrested Development,” put it, the online popularity of his former program is “enormously rewarding in every way except for financially.”

“Arrested Development,” a comedy that never attracted a sufficient audience on Fox from 2003 to 2006, consistently ranks among the top three series on Hulu, an online video site founded as a joint venture between NBC Universal and the News Corporation last year. Mr. Hurwitz wasn’t aware of his show’s top-ranked status until Jason Kilar, the chief executive of Hulu, mentioned it at a broadcasting conference in Las Vegas in mid-April.

“Isn’t that crazy?” Mr. Hurwitz remarked in an interview last week, still showing surprise. “This was a largely unwatched show when it was on network television.”

“Arrested Development” has had a cult fan base for years, as indicated by its strong sales on DVD. Mr. Hurwitz called it the “perfect show” for on-demand viewing because of hidden gems — jokes that make sense only after the viewer has seen a full season.

If Web streaming had been widespread a few years ago, Mr. Hurwitz said, perhaps “Arrested Development” could have stayed on the air. He also suggested that the show’s streaming success could enhance prospects for a film based on the series.

Hulu now offers 3,000 full-length episodes of archived television shows, including ones as old as “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” from 1955. “So you could definitely spend some time consuming the content,” Mr. Kilar said modestly. Perhaps surprisingly, four out of five titles in the Hulu library are viewed each day. Clearly, an audience is pursuing the archives.

“Very talented people spend their lives telling these stories. It’s a bit unusual that they’re only given the stage for a very discrete period of time,” he said.

The archived shows “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “NewsRadio” and “Babylon 5” are also among the most popular shows on Hulu. The broadcast networks present many of the same shows on their own Web sites: for example, offers episodes of “The A-Team,” “Miami Vice” and “Buck Rogers” and shows “Star Trek,” “The Twilight Zone” and “MacGyver.”

Quincy Smith, the president of CBS Interactive, said he hoped the Web site streams would create community experiences around the shows “one ‘Star Trek’ episode at a time.”

Even TV Land, the cable channel devoted to classic TV, is starting to stream. Episodes of “Gun- smoke” and “The Andy Griffith Show” are now available on

“The goal is to whet viewers’ appetites, and drive people back to the linear channel,” said Larry W. Jones, the president of TV Land.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Brooke Hogan Can’t Get Into College

There comes a time in a young woman’s life where higher education comes into play. But Brooke Hogan can’t seem to find a university that will let her (and the “Hogan Knows Best” crew) attend.

Reportedly the “About Us” songstress has applied to a slew of schools in Florida and is yet to receive an acceptance letter. Can’t a girl get some love?

The University of South Florida, Florida State University, and the University of Central Florida (who also denied Tommy Lee admission for his show Tommy Lee Goes to College) have all declined Brooke’s application, saying that she and the crew might disrupt the other students’ academic lives.

But there may be hope yet. Florida Atlantic University is still processing the pitch, with Student Government Tony Teixeira going so far as to meet with Hogan to do a tour of campus. FAU spokeswoman Kristine McGrath told press, “The university would not agree to an arrangement that would be disruptive to the academic setting,” but maybe they have a plan in the works.