Embracing the Beast

The Daily BeastI have a bad habit of waking at four in the morning, stumbling to my computer and scanning the news. Something, somewhere, is happening in the middle of the night and I need to know what it is before I can go back to sleep. It’s the digital insomnia syndrome. When I am afflicted, increasingly these days I head to The Daily Beast, Tina Brown’s recent entry into the wonderful world of web journalism, opinion and entertainment.

The Beast proves that you need a human filter to make the web interesting – otherwise the wisdom of the crowds leads to the overwhelming nonsense of the masses. Tina Brown has fashioned a long career straddling the line between intellectualism and sensationalism. She was successful in that vein at Vanity Fair, not so at The New Yorker. The web may be the perfect place for her journalistic sensibilities.

The Beast aggregates news and mixes it with proprietary content and celebrity opinion (left-leaning, of course).  Oliver Stone and Padma Lakshmi contribute recent tidbits. Charlie Gasparino, the ubiquitous CNBC commentator, dishes inside biz gossip in his blog and Laura Bennett proves that you don’t have to win Project Runway to mine a rich afterlife as a “personality.”

Tina Brown understands that in the digital age journalism is visual and textual. The video highlights of the Sunday political news shows saves us time otherwise wasted watching politicians deliver PR messages. Beast videos are embeddable (below) and span an intriguing cross-section of politics, culture and entertainment.

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