Lynne d Johnson



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06.28.07 06:24 PM

Widgetcon 2007

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06.21.07 10:14 PM

Kenard Gibbs named Group Publisher of EBONY and JET magazines

Kenard Gibbs, former president of Quincy Jones’ brainchild—VIBE magazine—has been appointed group publisher of EBONY and JET magazines and president of the newly formed EBONY/JET Entertainment Group.

As group publisher, Gibbs will oversee the advertising sales, event sponsorship, marketing, research, digital sales and production departments for EBONY and JET magazines.

Gibbs will also oversee the newly formed EBONY/JET Entertainment Group, a subsidiary of its parent company, Johnson Publishing Company, Inc. (JPC). This will include the creation of branded entertainment content through developing original and/or acquiring content to be distributed through theatrical, broadcast, cable and digital platforms including Video On Demand (VOD) and mobile.

“Kenard has an exceptional record of achievement and significant experience in the business, finance and publishing industries, and I am very excited that he will help to strengthen our growth strategy initiatives,” said Linda Johnson Rice, president and CEO of JPC. “He is an incredibly bright, creative and innovative business leader who has a keen sense of direction and passion for the future of Johnson Publishing Company.”

As former president of VIBE magazine, Gibbs oversaw all business development strategies and was responsible for all advertising sales revenue, event marketing, digital platforms and public relations. Gibbs also expanded the VIBE brand beyond print to mediums including broadcast, mobile and VOD. He also spearheaded the launch of VIBE VIXEN, a fashion and beauty magazine geared toward women. Under Gibbs’ leadership, VIBE became a prominent brand for reaching the elusive 18- to 34-year-old multicultural audience by developing a variety of multimedia platforms with properties including the VIBE AWARDS franchise and the WEEKEND VIBE syndicated show, Kenard Gibbs both of which he served as executive producer. In addition, he directed the efforts of VIBE on Demand; a strategic partnership with Comcast, VIBE branded CDs and the VIBE MusicFest. He is also the current founder/partner of Madvision Entertainment Group.

Gibbs, who has more than 20 years of experience in the entertainment and publishing industries, holds a master’s degree in marketing and finance from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. He also has a bachelor’s degree in political economy from Williams College in Massachusetts.

“I am honored to be responsible for future developments of strong iconic brands with such a meaningful legacy in the African-American community. Both EBONY and JET have untapped potential with regard to branded entertainment and will prove to be valuable assets to distribution and content partners who are seeking to connect with the African-American community,” said Gibbs. “We are prepared to meet the challenge of establishing our leadership position in the digital landscape as the brands have had for years in the print world.”

In addition, Gail Huggins Porter has been appointed director of the EBONY/JET Entertainment Group. She is an accomplished attorney with more than 15 years in the music and broadcast fields in positions such as motion picture literary agent for International Creative Management (ICM), vice president of video production for Def Jam and LaFace Records and senior vice president for Cathage Motion Pictures Inc./Baby Blue Productions. Most recently, Porter served as producer of the film\adaptation of the stage play For Colored Girls Who Considered Suicide When The Rainbow is Enuf, slated to be directed by Nzingha Stewart.

Gibbs will also oversee the Licensing division at JPC. Lisa Butler, who most recently served as senior corporate counsel of JPC, is now assistant vice president of Licensing. In addition to overseeing the company’s current licensing agreements with Dan River and American Greetings, she will direct the development and legal oversight of JPC’s consumer products/licensing initiatives and assist in creating a strategic licensing program to effectively connect the company’s well-established brands with quality manufacturing and retail partners.

(source: Johnson Publishing Company Press Room)

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06.20.07 03:16 PM

On The Radar

Barry Diller Tops Himself
Barry Diller started out running home-shopping giants QVC and HSN. But his current online business, Interactive Corp., is becoming even more successful.
Watch 60 Minutes Interview with Lesley Stahl

Lonelygirl15: Sellout!
Mashable received word that LG15 will soon be getting a new friend on the show – a scientist from skin care product company Neutrogena!

The Neutrogena employee will appear in multiple episodes and reportedly help the show’s cast fight an evil group called “The Order” (while subtly pimping products from the manufacturer of “premium skin, hair and cosmetics products”). “This long-term relationship with Neutrogena is unprecedented, as the brand comes to life organically with the characters and storyline”, according to the marketing pitch. >>>

Blogging Into The Mainstream
With increasing frequency, media outlets big and small are deciding that if you can't beat 'em, buy 'em. And why not? Slammed by critics for not being Internet savvy, the moves are a natural. You get an instant audience and fresh talent steeped in a sensibility that's still evolving. ( reports in words and pictures)

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06.18.07 05:55 PM

The raucous world of black celebrity blogs

BOSTON: Angel Laws, a 22-year-old college student in Jacksonville, North Carolina, merely wanted to poke fun at a celebrity. For the entry titled "Guess Who: Messed Up Feet Edition" on her gossip blog, Concrete Loop, Laws posted a photo of a pair of weathered bronze feet wrapped in strappy black sandals and hinted at the person's identity by commenting, "I guess all those years on the runway take a toll on the feet." Unfortunately for Laws, the owner of those feet, the model Iman, happens to read Concrete Loop. (read more from the International Herald Tribune)

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06.18.07 02:44 PM

Blogging Is The New Rapping

He's So hot still...

The Assimilated Negro is aight with me. In fact, I'm promoting his rap Rough Draft: Blogging's The New Rapping. I slept on it a while to make sure I was really feeling it. Trust, kid has a clear understanding of this blogging game and he's utilizing Hov's "30 is the new 20" to get the message out. Haters may hate, but I got mad love for the kid.

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06.13.07 08:41 PM

The Music Industry: No Longer A One Trick Pony

Record labels are becoming marketing and branding companies and no longer simply focusing on making records and hits.

read more | digg story

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06.13.07 03:10 PM

On the Radar

A hip-hop star's MySpace dreams
Business 2.0 columnist John Heilemann talks with music impresario Damon Dash about his new social networking venture and why he'd rather be Bill Gates than Steve Jobs. >>>

YouTube Promises Video Filtering
YouTube may be arriving fashionably late to the intellectual property party. After months of hedging, Google's video site has announced that it will begin testing a new video fingerprinting technology next month designed to filter out copyrighted clips uploaded by users. >>>

T.I. Is Starting to Scare Me
A long time ago, a young rapper named T.I.P. had to change his name because there was already another rapper named Q-Tip. So he became T.I., and since then he's spun that change into a weird split-personality gimmick, acting like he's really two different people. >>>

Music biz faces new realities
When Mark Pitts goes into a recording studio, he has a lot more on his mind than coming up with a hit song. The president of urban music at the Zomba Label Group, a division of Sony BMG Music Entertainment, wonders how companies like AOL, Kmart and Verizon will respond to the music. He's sure to record extra tracks in case the unreleased songs fit with an advertiser's youth-marketing plans. >>>

A New Spin for Corporate Music Deals
A new joint venture of Warner Music Group Corp. and one of the most prominent managers in the music business is aiming to generate new revenue by linking musicians and corporate America. >>>

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06.09.07 07:56 PM

Using Wikis and Social Networks To Teach

This summer I'm teaching a course called Self-Assessment Through Writing and Technology at the Metropolitan College of New York and I thought it was a perfect course for using to a wiki or social network. I need a place where the students can track all of the work they've been doing in the classroom and at home. They're taking a lot of self-assessment tests on personality, career, learning style, etc. and writing about it. The first part of the course is about them writing about what they're learning about themselves -- and mainly about them learning about themselves.

Now we're moving more into a full writing phase and I want to work on group essays and other forms of collaboration and even have the ability to do online group chats. In this phase their going to learn more about research and research tools, and a lot about writing techniques and writing tools.

After we go through a complete writing and discussion phase, we'll get into some multimedia -- using images online, as well as video and audio.

So I've been trying to figure out whether I use both a wiki and a social network. I've been looking at various hosted wiki options and really can't figure out which one best fulfills my needs or the needs of the classroom.

Down the line, I wanted to teach the students how to create simple web pages, but realized that time could better be spent with them working on a social network. I've looked at both Vox and Ning as options and had even considered hosting a joomla or phpnuke or even a drupal installation myself.

I'm just wondering if there's anyone out there who's used similar tools in a classroom setting. What tools have you found to be best? As much as I want my students to learn about technology, I want them writing a lot. So I need to decide on the proper tools like yesterday. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd appreciate.

It just really needs to be easy and simple to use for my students. It has to enable them to collaborate. Also to learn a little bit about creating their own web space, but without them having to necessarily learn HTML and any real tech skills. Because I want to be able to teach them about audio and video, I don't want to spend a lot of time on photoshop and dreamweaver. I want everything to be simple for them so that they spend most of their time making their own space on whatever application we use a great final project.


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06.07.07 06:40 PM

Is It A Racist, Sexist World In Wikipedia?

Liza Sabater, Publisher of Culturekitchen thinks so.

She says:

"There is an astoundingly racist discussion going on in Wikipedia on the subject of whether Steve Gilliard should be included in Wikipedia. I have added my two cents to the discussion after I read this:

He was definitely widely cited by his peers, in the liberal blogsphere and therefore meets the notability requirement. If Atrios, Markos, Josh Marshall are all citing him, I think he should remain.

So as long as white, male bloggers like Markos Mooulitzas, Josh Marshall and Duncan Black quote you, you are opened the gates of notability. Anybody else, no matter how important they are to the blogosphere, is kept out.

Unless, of course, you publish a book --and that's only if the book is by a major publisher with wide distribution."

Tara Hunt of HorsePigCow added her two cents:

"I was deleted not once, but twice. I was cited in as many, if not more, articles than Chris, but one of the commenters actually made the insinuation that the journalist covering the work I was doing must have had 'a personal interest in Hunt'. In my case, it may have been less about gender and more about their hatred for 'marketing people', which has come up quite often."

I'm not officially in Wikipedia, but there tangentially listed in Notable Articles from

As to the racism charge, I decided to put a few African-American Web pioneers names to the test...

Omar Wasow (check)

Though a lot of stuff about dude is definitely missing. What happened to New York Online and Or the work he did with Vibe and Essence to help get them on the Web?

McLean Mashingaidze-Greaves (naught)

Though ZeD, a CBC series he produced is listed. For those who don't know, he founded Virtual Melanin (that produced Cafe Los Negros and The Digital DownLow) and was the original chief of content for HBO-backed

Darien Dash (naught)

He's there mentioned as the brother of actress Stacey Dash, but not on his own accord.

On Dash, from a May 2000 BusinessWeek article:

"In 1994 with $200 in pocket money. He started by offering Web services, from strategy and design to implementing e-commerce applications, to urban-oriented music and entertainment companies.

It didn't take Dash long to land heavy-hitting customers like HBO Home Video, and last year, VISA. The business has steadily grown and is expected to pull $5 million in revenues this year. That may still be small, but Dash's reputation looms large. He is technology chair of the Harlem School District, where he has helped wire the schools with more than 750 PCs and broadband Net connections. And he sits with the likes of AOL exec and Washington Wizards owner Ted Leonsis on the board of New York group HEAVEN (Helping Educate, Activate, Volunteer, & Empower via the Net)."

I know this list isn't long enough to prove any point, and I haven't gotten to mentioning any women yet. I was simply interested in engaging in this exercise for myself, after reading Liza's blog post about how progressive blogger Steve Gilliard was being discussed at Wikipedia. I found an in memoriam post here on Think Progress, where racism also rears its ugly head in the comments about the blogger's passing.

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06.06.07 06:34 PM

Maryam Scoble Interviews BlogHer Founders

In this podtech video from The Scoble Show Maryam and Robert Scoble speaking to the founders of BlogHer, Lisa Stone, Elisa Camahort and Jory Des Jardins as they gear up for BlogHer '07 in Chicago. It's a pretty good video podcast, and they even address how the mainstream media is saying that blogging is dead.

Unfortunately I couldn't get the embed code to come up for the video, but you can go here to watch it.

I recently signed on to moderate a panel: Privacy, Exposure, Risk: Can you maintain safer spaces online?

The conference also seems to have a political bent, gearing up for Election '08. And overall, there just seems to be a lot more diverse programming this year.

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06.06.07 11:16 AM

Nas Video Anthology Vol. 1

nas_video_anthology.jpg Released in 2004, Nas Video Anthology Vol. 1 contains videos from "It Ain't Hard to Tell," "One Love," "Halftime," "Nas Is Like," "The World Is Yours," "If I Ruled the World (Imagine That) featuring Lauryn Hill," "Hate Me Now featuring Puff Daddy," "Street Dreams," "Nastradamus," "You Owe Me featuring Ginuwine," "Got Ur Self A..., One Mic," "Made You Look," and "I Can."

If you're like me, you may have missed out on this release, but thanks to the folks over at SSS (sunete sub sol) and the power of the Internet(s), content like this can be available whenever you want it.

Download (via SSS)

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06.01.07 10:48 PM

Are these the new Beastie Boys?

802 Music Video - Rap From Vermont

Actually it seems a little more "Lazy Sunday - Chronicles of Narnia" a la Chris Parnell and Adam Samberg of SNL.

06.06.07 update: New York Times article, Yo, Vermont, What Up? These 3 Dudes, for Starters

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06.01.07 01:10 PM

Get Rich or Die Trying for Real

formula50_withmag.jpg50 Cent may never have to make a movie or record again (according to his recent singles "Amusement Park" and "Straight To The Bank" his latest album might suck anyway, though Yayo's laugh "ha ha ha ha ha" might be a hit).

For a little investment and marketing that the artist did for Glaceau's Vitamin Water, he might be paid $400 million just because Coca-Cola decided to purchase Glaceau for $4.1 billion.

How's that for foresight?

06.06.07 update: While listening to Miss Info discuss this on the radio this weekend, it dawned on me that if 50 indeed had any investment in Glaceau at all, it was probably only in the Forumula 50 brand. Beyond that, as Byron Crawford (surprise) said, it's probably only some sort of endorsement or licensing deal.

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