Comments: Week of November 23, 2009

1. Music can be a divisive force, as evidenced by the discussion generated by Hugo Lindgren’s story on Dirty Projectors and other exciting new local music (“Brooklyn Calling,” November 16). Some commenters at were bitter in their denunciation of the bands featured. “Brooklyn continues to be overrated in almost everything it does, including music,” snarked one commenter. “For everyone who actually does anything remotely associated with music, you have to endure seven hangers-on who do nothing more than dress the part.” Others were miffed by the absence of their personal favorites. “This article misses the mark since it does not include the Hold Steady,” groused one fan. Not everyone was quite so downbeat. “Brooklyn’s a great place to hear new music. It’s cheaper, got edgier venues, and a lot of musicians that are making new, exciting music live here,” wrote one commenter. In reference to Lizzy Goodman’s curated playlist (“Brooklyn Top 40” ), another said, “Regardless of geography, this is a superbly paced playlist with lots of familiar pleasures and many that are new to me.” Apologies to Apache Beat, No. 37, of whom an incorrect photo was shown.

2. Gabriel Sherman’s profile of business-journalism wunderkind Andrew Ross Sorkin ( Information Broker,” November 16) set off a debate about the troubled state of the profession. “Journalists such as Andrew Ross Sorkin personify why so many members of the public have lost faith in the mainstream news media,” averred one commenter. “If Sorkin had really been doing his job as a journalist in the tradition of great investigative reporters, he would have used his access to sound the alarm concerning the impending catastrophe.” There was some support for Sorkin on the web, as well. “You can tell who the sources are by who Sorkin is sympathetic to, but he doesn’t encourage the reader to be nice to his sources,” notes one commenter of Sorkin’s book. “Any reader who invests in Too Big to Fail will not be disappointed.”

3. Mark Harris’s evaluation of the nation’s oldest broadcast network ( “Will Somebody Please Save NBC?,” November 16) rallied critics of the networks at “All the networks are to blame for this mess. They dumbed down content, flooded the airwaves with ‘reality’ programming, and are now sitting at headquarters with mouths agape, wondering what to do next. Probably nothing will save them at this point—the audience is lost,” scolded one commenter. Another agreed, noting, “The reason I have not watched network TV is because the last ten years have been filled with nothing but reality TV and some version of Law & Order. I will take whatever Showtime and HBO are serving, thank you.” A former ad executive for NBC begged for leniency for NBC boss Jeff Zucker. “He’s a realist and a businessman, charged with running a profitable enterprise. If a test pattern would generate enough viewers and ratings to draw advertisers, Zucker would put it on the air.”

4. The secret underground of Nicolas Cage fans revealed itself in response to Logan Hill’s timeline of the actor’s career (“The Wild, Wild Ways of Nicolas Cage,” November 16). “Nic Cage is such a gifted actor. It’s easy to forget that, because his work for the last five to seven years has been so horrible. I wish that he’d go back to being the old Nic Cage,” said one commenter. “I would have to say he seems like a pretty interesting guy,” said another. “I’d have lunch with him.”

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Comments: Week of November 23, 2009