Wednesday, September 17, 1997

MSNBC, You Know Me!

Well we all already know about the little social faux pas that happened last week with the MSNBC party. Its bad enough if you have to uninvite guests (especially if you're the guest), but to publicly show email addresses to everyone else who didn't "make the cut" adds fuel to the fire. Not missing a
step, New Jersey Online sent out an email invitation to all those (un)lucky guests for brewskies at the Greenwich Brewing Company. Vin Crosbie slipped me the list, but to republicize the names would take tacky beyond Velvet Diana wall-hangings. Kudos to NJO for seizing a prime opportunity to capture an audience chomping at the bit for a good time and bonding.

I managed to squeeze through the tight security and made my way into the bustling Knitting Factory the warm evening of 9/17. The usual characters were filling the stage: Howard Greenstein (Microsoft), Matthew Shevach (Narrowline), David Frackman, Sam Huxley, and Mike Potter (Brand Dialogue), Bonnie Halper (, Richard Greenfield (journalist) and Denise Siedner (Grey Interactive). Andrew Locke (MSNBC on the Internet, Redmond) and Brian Storm (MSNBC, Lead Multimedia Editor) didn't have much to explain about the eyeballs lapel pins all MSNBC employees were wearing. It was "just something to do..." TV monitors around the 3 leveled alternative art and music space highlighted the MSNBC site, the facilities and clips of shows.

Dan Schock (Microsoft's NY Sidewalk) informed me they distributed 20,000 tickets of give-aways and prizes in Bryant Park this summer during a lunch-time blitz. Social calendar guru Randall Stempler clued me in to for all the latest info on what's going on around the world, like the event on Prostate Cancer on October 1 1997, in Moscow, Russia. Scott MacWhinnie (CB Commercial
Real Estate Group) representing downtown Manhattan offices and John Crosier of Canary Wharf Ltd. in London were enjoying the revelries.

The main floor (middle level) had live music alternating between ambiant and harder jazz in the back. In the front there was a feeding frenzy of new media fishes gaping for chinese take-out food cartons to fill with fried rice, steamed dumplings, and chocolate dipped fortune cookies. Actually there was a feeding frenzy downstairs too at the Mexican food table. I met Tom Morey (Chase Manhattan, VP Electronic Media) and Katie Morgan ( during one binge. The Ex Caminos ( were playing funky jazz for the crowd in this room. Steven Blinn and Stephen Botaglio (NY Bureau Chief for the Hollywood Report) were also enjoying the evening's revelries. Michael Diamante and Noreen Mastellon (T3 Media) were lining the bridge out from the main room.

Noreen was sporting a pretty white dress with leaves from Country Road she modeled in a benefit for her school.  Virginia Selbo and Benjamin Weil of were on the 3rd level, overseeing the mosh pit, along with Georgio Palmisano (photographer, 212-431-7719). Back down in the bowels I bumped into James Golden (, who filled me in on his work with Earthweb, the backend work he designed for the Miss America segment on MSNBC. His comment on working on this was regarding the women contestants: "they're so exploited." That's no news to some, yet doesn't affect these show's popularity.  Brian Martin ( of MSN mentioned another project/site with MSN which he art directed -- the Rifff Crash party (

(Appeared originally in @The Scene in the @NY newsletter)