Letters of Mass Construction

Snark Fail Vanity Fair Style


Vanity Fair today posted an article about Twitter, in particular Six intelligent Twitter women. The name of the article was America’s Tweethearts. Really Tweethearts? I should have stopped right there and banged my head into the wall (which thanks to this article I know uses 150 calories per hour).

The article has created a little bit of a stir on Twitter today and has generated a multitude of blogs (go read Felicia Day’s blog it sums it up better than I can). Most of the blogs rip the author for treating the subject with a sense of disrespect and shallowness. I don’t disagree but this isn’t what really boiled my bottom.

No, what sent me spinning off into the stratosphere is frankly the article was written like a big pile of steaming cow dung. Vanity Fair is a major publication and I have read from several sources the author, Vanessa Grigoriadis, is a respected writer. She must have used a ghostwriter on this one and forgot to check it before sending it in.

From the first paragraph (where she tries to sound cute by using the laughable “twilebrity” as her catchphrase) to the last paragraph (where she explains the women are waiting for “newfangled web synergies” to make money) she shows she doesn’t really understand Twitter. I think it also becomes apparent she did no actual research into the women she profiled. I am not even sure she looked past a few Tweets before writing the article. Combine this with the fact I can never tell who she is talking about (the women she profiles or an average user) and the article is a confusing mess.

It all came off as amateur hour at the Apollo. A little snarky even. The problem was it wasn’t even good snark. At least if it had been good snark I would have gotten a laugh out of it. Maybe I should send her the names of some of my Twitter friends and she can get a dose of what good snark looks like. My friends never fail to have me doubled up in laughter everyday.

It felt like I was reading one of my 5th grade student’s research papers. You know the one I am talking about. It comes in with big giant capital letters on the top of the page with a title like, “What is Twitter?”

If nothing else the article will drum up some interest in the wonderful women in spite of itself. It should teach (but probably won’t) Vanity Fair to send out a reporter who won’t be insulted by having to cover people who aren’t “truly famous” (her words). Maybe at a minimum they can read a few Twitter streams and get their snark sharpened.


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4 Responses to “Snark Fail Vanity Fair Style”

  1. Sarah Daly says:

    >Fantatsic, and completely agree. I've become used to a level of intelligence from the Vanity Fair articles, but it felt like they had hired an intern to do all the (non)work for them. Even the fact that they put TW in front of everyword…eurgh. Well, I've got one for them…Twats.http://thricewiser.blogspot.com

  2. Merri says:

    >Well, I like the words cool awesome yay and wow. Esp yay. Yay is probably my most typed/spoken word ever in my life.

  3. Harley May says:

    >I haven't read the article, but am interested in what was said. Truly, twitter is a great way for getting yourself out there and if it isn't represented intelligently, I'd be happy to help Vanity Fair out. Also, you underestimate the power of your blog and the reach you have, Christopher Daley. NAME SOME FREAKING NAMES OF SNARKY WOMEN YOU FOLLOW. (i.e. @harleymaywrites)

  4. Anonymous says:

    >I haven't twittered, tweeted or even blackberried yet. Not sure that I ever will, but it's always possible that I will find something to say that millions want to hear about. Had an idea a few years ago that for every dollar we invest in bombs and bullets we spend a matching amount on bread for the hungry; perhaps people in poor countries would learn to love us as the bread basket of the world and not as a super power with a history of messing around in other countries business? Just a thought, Thad

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