What a dog’s breakfast! By one reckoning, the celebrity culture has been with us since the late 19th century (Dickens in England, Hugo in France, Twain/Clemens in the US). So we’ve had roughly 135 years to think about the question. Listening to the Reuters event, you might think the topic was brand new, a nascent puzzle like Web 2.0. Not only were arguments wildly divergent, but manifestly bad ideas won enthusiastic patrons and audience assent.

Let’s begin telegraphically. Janice Min was good. Jessica Coen was bad. Michael Wolff had several good moments and otherwise careened from one bad idea to another like a drunk on the A train. Ken Sunshine and Anne Thompson wandered from good points to bad points somewhat less dramatically. (Ok, so I have a hard time staying telegraphic.)

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