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AOL/Huffington Post Fires Moviefone Editor Who Asked Freelancers to Work for Free

April 7, 2011 by  
Filed under Business, Media, News

On Thursday, April 7, 2011 FoxNews.com reported that a top editor at AOL’s Huffington Post Media Group’s Moviefone was fired Wednesday after suggesting in an email that terminated freelancers should consider contributing to the website for free, the Wall Street Journal reports.
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Some critics say the decision to fire Moviefone Editor-in-Chief Patricia Chiu is hypocritical considering Huffington Post’s controversial longtime practice of not paying contributors to the site.

Chiu reportedly circulated a memo to freelancers and bloggers who had just received notice that they were fired as part of a company restructuring that would include a move back to using mostly paid staff journalists. But it was her suggestion that the freelancers should continue to work for free that reportedly landed Chiu in hot water.
“We will, indeed, be moving away from a freelancer model and toward one relying on full-time staffers,” the e-mail read. “Sometime soon – this week, I believe – many of you will be receiving an [email] informing you that your services as a freelancer will no longer be required. You will be invited to contribute as part of our non-paid blogger system; and though I know that for many of you this will not be an option financially, I strongly encourage you to consider it if you/d like to keep writing for us, because we value all of your voices and input.”
Last month, the national Newspaper Guild called for a boycott of Huffington Post after a “refusal to compensate its thousands of writers in the wake of its $315 million merger with AOL.”
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But AOL/Huffington Post rep Mario Ruiz defended the website’s practices, saying most of their free bloggers are “not professional writers.”
People blog on HuffPost for free for the same reason they go on cable TV shows every night for free: because they are passionate about their ideas, want them to be heard by the largest possible audience, and understand the value that that kind of visibility can bring,” Ruiz told FoxNews.com in a March email.
“There’s no commitment; they can post as frequently or infrequently as they would like to. The Huffington Post makes no claim of ownership over their posts, and they can cross-post on other sites, including their own,” he said.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the email wasn’t Chiu’s first misstep.
Several weeks ago, she reportedly urged staffers to take into consideration the need to maintain positive relationships with movie studios when making editorial decisions.
“The reality of our situation is that, as a movies site, we work with movie studios every day, and it is in our best interests to stay on good terms with them,” she is quoted as writing. “Staying on good terms with studios means that we will relay information if asked. It does not mean that we would ever force a writer or an editor to edit their work for the sake of a studio – or anyone else.”

AOL’s $315 million purchase of HuffingtonPost has resulted in AOL laying off roughly 20 percent of its workforce, or about 900 employees. According to the New York Post, none of Huffington Post’s staff was affected.
On Wednesday, AOL also fired the last of its freelancers at its business and finance sites, AOL Daily Finance and Walletpop. According to Business Insider, the full-time staff at those sites is down to 1-2 employees.
FoxNews.com’s Diane Macedo contributed to this report.

Source: FoxNews.com

Editor’s Note: It is sad the big online media sites want writer to work for free and yes some are bloggers but the same expectations are demanded from them. Many bloggers did not went to school for journalism but still they are doing a great job in telling us the news.

How Do You Know Movie Trailer & Reese Witherspoon Star Ceremony

December 11, 2010 by  
Filed under Entertainment, Featured

Reese WitherspoonReese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Paul Rudd, and Jack Nicholson star in How Do You Know, the new comedy written and directed by James L. Brooks that takes a contemporary and romantic look at the question, “How do you know?” Lisa (Witherspoon) is a woman whose athletic ability is the defining passion of her life, having been her focus since early childhood.

When she is cut from her team, everything she has ever known is suddenly taken from her. Not knowing what to do, she stumbles toward regular life. In this mode, she begins a fling with Matty (Wilson), a major league baseball pitcher, a self-centered ladies man – a narcissist with a code of honor. George (Rudd) is a straight-arrow businessman whose complicated relationship with his father, Charles (Nicholson), takes a turn when George is accused of a financial crime, even though he’s done nothing wrong. Though he may be headed to jail, George’s honesty, integrity, and unceasing optimism may be his only path to keeping his sanity. Before Lisa’s relationship with Matty takes root, she meets George for a first date on the worst evening of each of their lives: she has just been cut, and he has just been served. When everything else seems to be falling apart, they will discover what it means to have something wonderful happen.

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Genres: Comedy
Rating: How Do You Know has been rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for Sexual Content and Some Strong Language.

Starring: Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Paul Rudd, Kathryn Hahn, and Jack Nicholson

Directed By: James L. Brooks
Produced By: James L. Brooks, Paula Weinstein, Laurence Mark, Julie Ansell

Executive Produced By: John D. Schofield, Richard Sakai

Studio: Sony Pictures

Movie Release Date: December 17, 2010

About Reese Witherspoon:
Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon was born on March 22, 1976 at Southern Baptist Hospital (now Memorial Medical Center) in New Orleans, Louisiana. She was the second child born to Dr. John Witherspoon and Betty Reese. Her father was a military surgeon specializing in the ear, nose and throat. Her mother was a Registered Nurse who later became a Ph.D in pediatric nursing. Reese spent the first four years of her life in Wiesbaden, Germany where her father served as a lieutenant colonel in the US Army reserves. Shortly after, John moved the family back to the States, settling in Nashville, Tennessee.

Reese was introduced to the entertainment industry at a very early age. At age 7, she began modeling. This led to appearances on several local television commercials. At age 11, she placed first in a Ten-State Talent Fair.

In 1990, she landed her first major acting role in Robert Mulligan‘s The Man in the Moon (1991). Her role as a 14-year old tomboy earned her rave reviews. Roles in bigger films such as Jack the Bear (1993) and A Far Off Place (1993) followed shortly after.

Following high school graduation in 1994 from Harpeth Hall, a Nashville all girls school, Reese decided to put her acting career on hold and attend Stanford University where she would major in English literature. However, her collegiate plans were shortly dashed when she accepted roles to star in two major motion pictures: Fear (1996) alongside Mark Wahlberg and Freeway (1996) with Kiefer Sutherland. Although neither film was a huge box-office success, they did help to establish Reese as a rising starlet in Hollywood and open the door for bigger and better film roles. Those bigger roles came in movies such as Pleasantville (1998), Election (1999) and Cruel Intentions (1999).

Her breakthrough role came as Elle Woods in the 2001 comedy Legally Blonde (2001). The movie was huge box-office smash and established Reese as one of the top female draws in Hollywood. The next year, she scored a follow-up hit with Sweet Home Alabama (2002) which went on to gross over $100 million dollars at the box office. In 2006, she took home the best actress Oscar for her role as June Carter Cash in theJohnny Cash biopic Walk the Line (2005).

Off the screen, she was married to Ryan Phillippe from 1999 to 2007. They met at her 21st birthday party and subsequently worked together inCruel Intentions (1999). They have two children: a daughter, Ava Elizabeth (born 9 September 1999) and a son, Deacon (born 23 October 2003). For more information visit http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000702/

Editor’s Note: Congratulations to Reese Witherspoon for her Hollywood Star

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