Barry Diller Hub

Barry Diller and Diane von Furstenburg to Help Finance Proposed Massive NYC Park on Hudson River


Diane von Furstenburg and Barry Diller will provide the bulk of financing for a $165 million dollar park proposed for the site of a crumbling pier along the Hudson River, Gothamist reports.

Writes Gothamist:

A crumbling old Hudson River pier once used by ocean liners like the Lusitania will be torn down and replaced by a 2.7 acre park on the water featuring rolling hills and an outdoor amphitheater. Mayor de Blasio is expected to reveal further details about the park at a press conference this morning, but the Hudson River Park Trust has revealed that the park will be largely financed by a foundation formed by the billionaire couple Barry Diller and Diane von Furstenberg.

...Von Furstenberg, the fashion designer, and Diller, the former head of Paramount Pictures and Fox, have committed $130 million to the park, with the city pledging another $17 million, and $18 million from New York State to build an esplanade to the pier park. The park will be between the pile fields of Pier 54 and Pier 56, which will remain in order to provide a fish habitat.


The park will be erected at the end of 14th near the Meatpacking District - also Von Furstenburg's fashion headquarters (are you watching House of DVF yet?).

The park's planning is being criticized by city advocates over a "lack of transparency" according to Gothamist.  The Hudson River Park Trust’s board, the Army Corps of Engineers, the state Department of Environmental Conservation, and the public will have a chance to weigh in before the project is approved.


(gothamist via jmg)

Andrew Sullivan Set To Start Independent Pay Site February 1

AndrewsullivanbeastGay blogger Andrew Sullivan announced today that he and his executive editorial team, Patrick Appel and Chris Bodenner, are leaving their virtual home at Newsweek-owned The Daily Beast to set up shop as a pay site with no ads, a move they say will help them get back to their online grassroots.

From Sullivan's announcement:

...As we contemplated the end of our contract with the Beast at the end of 2012, we faced a decision... As we debated and discussed that unknowable future, we felt more and more that getting readers to pay a small amount for content was the only truly solid future for online journalism. And since the Dish has, from its beginnings, attempted to pioneer exactly such a solid future for web journalism, we also felt we almost had a duty to try and see if we could help break some new ground.

The only completely clear and transparent way to do this, we concluded, was to become totally independent of other media entities and rely entirely on you for our salaries, health insurance, and legal, technological and accounting expenses.
As of February 1, we will revert to our old URL - Here's the core principle: we want to create a place where readers - and readers alone - sustain the site. No bigger media companies will be subsidizing us; no venture capital will be sought to cushion our transition (unless my savings count as venture capital); and, most critically, no advertising will be getting in the way.

The cost will be $19.99 a year, which works out to about a nickel a day. Whether or not you think that is a fair price probably depends on how much you value Sullivan and his team's opinions. If you ask me, that's actually a pretty good deal.

In the meantime, The team's work will still be accessible at The Daily Beast until their new site officially launches next month.

Barry Diller and Scott Rudin Launch E-Publishing Firm

IAC Chairman Barry Diller and producer Scott Rudin have jumped into the E-book business, the NYT reports:

DillerMr. Rudin and Frances Coady, a longtime publishing executive, have formed a partnership with Mr. Diller in a new venture called Brightline. It will publish e-books and eventually physical books in a partnership with Atavist, a publisher based in Brooklyn with expertise in producing electronic books and articles.

The alliance creates a new competitor in the rapidly changing digital book market, one that is dominated by Amazon, the online retailer, which has roughly 65 percent of e-book sales. Though fledgling, the new venture will enjoy the support of two influential executives who control a wide array of resources in media and entertainment.

Report: Daily Beast and Newsweek to Merge

The announcement is coming tomorrow, reports the New York Observer:

Newsweekbeast "It will be a 50-50 merger of the two companies. The editorial staffs will combine under the editorship of Tina Brown, who will again run a high-profile glossy. Newsweek owner Sidney Harman, 92, and IAC chairman Barry Diller had for weeks disagreed over an operating structure for the hybrid publication. The deal reached today establishes a daily role for Mr. Harman and strong editorial independence for Ms. Brown...For now, Newsweek will be called Newsweek and The Daily Beast will be called The Daily Beast, with some intermingling of the names to come later."

UPDATE: The official announcement.

Matt Drudge: 'I Do Not Love Sex with Men'


New York magazine's Intelligencer got a "quick response" from Matt Drudge after emailing him about his placement on OUT magazine's 'Power 50' list this year along with another glass closet inhabitant, Barry Diller.

Drudge Said Drudge: “False. False. False. I do not love sex with men. My site is not anti-gay. I present both sides of the anti-choice-life issue. I am not anti-tolerant! Except against big-government freaks. I liked Chaka in the eighties, and have not watched Young and the Restless in twenty years! But I do watch Judge Judy!”

OUT editor Aaron Hicklin talked about the 'Power 50' in a Sunday piece for the UK's Guardian and why he has no problem with naming those who haven't publicly acknowledged their sexuality:

"Much has changed in two years. For a start, four of the names included in the 'Glass Closet' story that accompanied the inaugural Power 50 list have since come out, starting with Foster who finally acknowledged, in December 2007, her 'beautiful Cydney, who sticks with me through the rotten and the bliss'. Second, we are now in Barack Obama's America, opening up a very different vista for gays and lesbians, in which the days of being knocked back and forth between evangelical Republicans and poll-sensitive Democrats seem, finally, to be numbered."

News: Writer's Strike, Lance Bass, Maryland, Val Kilmer, Florida

road.jpg Michael Eisner says deal has been reached in writer's strike.

Theronroad.jpg Charlize Theron impressed by breasts of Harvard's Hasty Pudding drag boys.

road.jpg Anti-gay Pastor Ken Hutcherson's wife attends school board meeting to discuss public reaction since her Hutcherson appeared at Mount Si High School on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: "My family is boldly called names like 'bigot', 'homophobe' and we've been permanently branded in the valley."

road.jpg Wouldn't a divorce have been simpler, loser?

road.jpg Speakers exchange "verbal fisticuffs" in Florida in debate over gay marriage ban.

road.jpg Forces against same-sex marriage in Maryland vow to step up their attacks: "Del. Donald H. Dwyer Jr. is circulating a petition to take a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage directly to the floor of the House of Delegates without a committee vote. He also is seeking signatures to bring to the House floor a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage. While the Anne Arundel Republican is a fervent gay-rights opponent, he said Marylanders deserve to know their legislators' views. 'It's only when the votes are cast that we really know where people stand,' Dwyer said."

road.jpg Gawker takes on Barry Diller...

Veindarterroad.jpg Gorgeous shot of a bug covered in dew (via kottke)

road.jpg BBC: Hundreds of gay Asians in marriages of convenience because of the shame faced in Asian cultures: "In my culture it's not acceptable to be gay. If I have a marriage of convenience it will give them the illusion that I'm straight and I can carry on with who I want."

road.jpg TJ Maxx courting the gay dollar? What about those who are versatile?

road.jpg Gay Christian man wins £47,000 in compensation from the Church of England: "John Reaney took the Hereford diocesan board of finance to an employment tribunal after his appointment as a youth worker was blocked. Bishop of Hereford Anthony Priddis has apologised and gay rights group Stonewall said the "substantial compensation" sent a clear message. Mr Reaney, from Colwyn Bay, Conwy, said he was delighted the case was over. 'Lesbian and gay Christians working within the Church of England are entitled to be treated with humanity,' said Mr Reaney, 42. 'I'm very grateful to Stonewall for supporting this case throughout.'"

road.jpg Former Washington state Rep. Richard Curtis returning checks to campaign donors.

road.jpg Lance Bass and beau on the rocks?

Fabroad.jpg Toronto gay mag FAB bought up by Pink Triangle Press: "Pink Triangle Press is also publisher of the Ultimate Pride Guides in Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa, as well as international gay travel mag The Guide. The combined circulation of PTP's print pubs is now 156,000, with a reach of about 275,000 monthly readers. Along with its operations in Internet, television and interactive media, PTP's total reach in the gay community is over half a million."

road.jpg School ends blood drives because of anti-discrimination policy on sexual orientation: San Jose State University President Don Kassing suspended all on-campus blood drives last week, claiming federal donation guidelines that forbid gay men from donating blood conflict with the school's non-discrimination policy regarding sexual orientation. Kassing announced his decision to end blood drives in a Jan. 31 email to students. 'I recognize the importance of giving blood and we know that universities are significant sources of blood . . . however lacking further action by the FDA, we are guided by the clear mandates of our non-discrimination policy,' Kassing said in the email.

road.jpg Justin Timberlake to hit the "Open Road" in new movie: "According to Variety, the 27-year-old Sexyback singer will play a young man trying to reconnect with his father (Jeff Bridges), a legendary athlete, as he struggles to get him home to his ailing mother’s bedside (Mary Steenburgen)."

road.jpg Val Kilmer to be the voice of K.I.T.T. in the new Knight Rider.


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