The New York Media World

Crosley:  No, I don’t think it’s mean. I think the idea of meanness is an incredibly immature one on both sides. I think that if you are the subject of meanness and you’re upset by it because it hurts your feelings, then it’s the wrong industry or you’re reading it wrong. You’re reading it for something other than its intention. Conversely, if you are a journalist and you are in media then you make your living by being mean with no substance. It’s like bad Indian food where you’re like this is just a bunch of spices. What happened to the flavor. If you’re being mean with no substance, that’s not real journalism anyway so there’s nothing to get upset about. I feel like whenever either alleged victims of New York snark or people who are purveyors of it get upset, I think it’s because it’s not actually what they do. You’re not actually being criticized for what you do and then when they’re doing it, they’re not actually being journalists. So I think it’s pretty easy to dismiss that element and the only thing that’s bad about it is if it takes up the space of real criticism or real sort of interaction, or real sort of analysis of entertainment, which is always much more fun and rewarding than Person A just kind of sucks. I’m not going to tell you why. I just feel like maybe they should be locked in a closet somewhere and never come out.

Question: Does Gawker hate you?

Crosley: I became immune to that a long time ago. Of course, stuff still hurts and like I said, it’s the level in which you let it in. It’s the level in which you let something bother. You’re like is this a critique of what I’m doing by someone who doesn’t know me. But one of my first pieces for The Village Voice was-- what was it called? That’s terrible. I’m going senile. Butt Seriously, that was the headline; it was called Butt Seriously with the two T’s in the Butt and it was about white women with a larger than normal amount of junk in their respective trunks. It mostly got a good response. It was circulated on the web but I got some letters into the Village Voice that called me a racist. They were well worded too which is the worst thing that anything that comes from a crazy person can be because you forget. You think maybe they have a point because they’re using these SAT words. I remember the first time I read it I locked my office door and I got a little teary. It was the most hurtful thing and that sort of cauterized the wound a little bit though because there were so many letters for that pieces from people who seemed to just be waiting to be pissed off about something. And there’s that element to Gawker but I have to say, I don’t know. I’m kind of glad it exists. I think that it will be dangerous and I think it’s already coming to that time period when people can’t remember a time before it exists. What do they look at every morning when they came into their offices before Gawker? I don’t know -- CNN, anything. They’ve actually been pretty good to me to tell you the truth. I think that once they let the commenters on, it was sort of a very interesting dynamic that happened with people who actually edit the site, because then, in addition to writing, having the responsibility of having to have a phenomenal amount of output of blog posts and witticisms and things to comment on every day and every hour, they also had the responsibility of directing people. Here you go. You either hate this person or you don’t hate this person. You can see the sort of confusion ensue if they’re non-partial pieces and there have been a fair amount of non-partial pieces about me, where “is she banking on all her connections? Is she a good writer? Is she a shitty writer? What level of attractiveness is she? What level of talent is she?” That’s not good or bad; those are questions and I guess it’s their right to pose them.

Question: Do you blog?

Crosley:  Do I blog? No. I don’t. It’s funny, but some of my best friends are bloggers, honestly. The good reason, the flattering toward the blogosphere reason and it’s also true, it’s just the flattering part, is that I think if I have thoughts that are that worthwhile in culture and the state of media and the state of Anna Wintour, they’re going to be funneled into something larger eventually. I don’t have them at the frequency. I’ve never kept a journal, I’ve never kept a diary, so I don’t think I could do that. It is a skill and I don’t have it. Or if I have it, I just feel like I can never be satisfied with just that comment. I want to know what else is connected to it. It either fizzles out in my brain or it becomes larger but I don’t blog myself. I was once at a party full of bloggers and the man who runs the aforementioned site asked me if I had a blog and this was ages ago. This must’ve been like 2003 or something like that and I just sort of forgot where I was and I said “Oh, God no.” You hear like the crickets chirp and the records scratched. They’re all really smart people. I think that if people get pissed about Gawker or blogs, it’s because people are using their powers other than the subjects would wish them to but it’s not because they’re idiots.

Navigating the snarky urban jungle.

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