Are Washington Post Reporters Sexist? Racist? Atheist?

Test Your Knowledge of Twitter Panic and Other Memes With Media Guy's Media Studies Pop Quiz

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Yes, it's time once again for Media Guy's Quarterly(-ish) Media Studies Pop Quiz. All books and papers off your desk -- now!

SHIELDS: Just look at those lush, drug-induced eyelashes.
SHIELDS: Just look at those lush, drug-induced eyelashes. Credit: Joseph Marzullo
The Washington Post recently announced a new social-media policy stipulating that its "journalists must refrain from writing, tweeting or posting anything -- including photographs or video -- that could be perceived as reflecting political, racial, sexist, religious or other bias or favoritism that could be used to tarnish our journalistic credibility." In addition, "This same caution should be used when joining, following or friending any person or organization online." What, in effect, does this mean?

  1. Washington Post reporters are a bunch of opinionated, biased, partisan, racist, sexist atheists (or, possibly, Wiccans) who should be thankful they have thoughtful, proactive bosses who are willing to protect them from their worst impulses.
  2. In the cyber cafeteria, the Washington Post is now relegated to sitting by itself at that one table with the wobbly leg in the corner by the trash bins -- and not even Mrs. Musbocker, the lunch lady, is nice to it anymore.
  3. Increased sales of My Little Pony Secret Diary With Locket at D.C.-area Toys 'R' Us stores.


In the aftermath of the disintegration of their marriage, TLC's Kate and Jon Gosselin just had their reality-TV show, "Jon & Kate Plus 8," renamed "Kate Plus 8" (Jon's lawyers are up in arms about that). What other names were considered?

  1. "Kate Plus 8 Minus 180 Pounds of Deadweight"
  2. "Watch Jon Mate" (TLC realized it already existed; it's called Us Weekly.)
  3. "The Kate Show!" (Eight kids sold off to Disney Channel, forced to be even more adorable)


The much-hyped Google Wave went into invite-only preview mode last week. What is it?

  1. A spastic but surprisingly sexy hip-and-hand-swivel move that Google co-founder Larry Page perfected at Stanford Computer Science Club mixers and will use during his upcoming stint on "Dancing With the Stars." (Eat your heart out, Steve Wozniak!)
  2. A cascading full-body gesture executed in Google Stadium by company employees every time Yahoo or Microsoft do something stupid, Twitter goes down, or Mark Zuckerberg gets a pimple.
  3. Google's secret plan to swamp and overwhelm any remaining scraps of attention span and non-text-ad-supported sentience you have left.


HarperCollins, the publisher of Sarah Palin's forthcoming book, just announced that it will be titled "Going Rogue: An American Life." What other titles were considered but ultimately rejected?

  1. "Going Vogue: Get Your Own Wasilla-to-Washington Makeover for $150,000 or less!"
  2. "Obama's Death Panels Are Gonna Come and Kill All Y'all: My Sober, Reasoned Critique of Health Care Reform"
  3. "Nasty Little Bugger: The Levi Johnston Story"


In the wake of the continuing commercial blitz for Latisse -- in the words of celebrity spokesperson Brooke Shields, a "prescription treatment for inadequate or not enough lashes" -- what other bizarre celebrity-endorsed drugs are pharmaceutical companies bringing to market?

  1. Blubberelle, a "prescription treatment for inadequate or not enough sanity," endorsed by hysterical, weepy cable talk-show host Glenn Beck.
  2. Ballsify, a "prescription treatment for men who just need to grow a pair already, for chrissakes," endorsed by Jon Gosselin.
  3. Whoreagra, a "prescription treatment for inadequate or not enough endorsement deals," endorsed by Media Guy.


The prime-time "Jay Leno Show" isn't exactly the big hit NBC must have been hoping for. Why?

  1. Conservative viewers accustomed only to Leno's chaste upper body put off by the show's sultry new desk-free format.
  2. Jay Leno viewers, generally immobilized by fourth beer, or fifth bong hit, at 11:30 p.m., still sober enough at 10 p.m. to work the remote, make switching to a better show much easier.
  3. Because it's only slightly funnier than "CSI: NY," and nowhere near as funny as David Caruso's hilariously bad acting on "CSI: Miami."


Extrapolating from its most recent infusion of venture-capital dollars, Twitter is now theoretically worth $1 billion dollars. What does that mean?

  1. Individual tweets now have an estimated market value of one meeeellion dollars.
  2. The Twitter Fail Whale's contract demands for artisanal smelt and organic sea lions can now be met, staving off defection to Facebook.
  3. Life has no meaning.


ANSWER KEY: A -- unless it's B or C.

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Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" media columnist for Advertising Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco

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