I'm an editor on the Web. Everyday I go to my cubicle, strap on my wrist brace, and put content onto the Internet.

You know -- "content" -- that stuff on the Web. It used to be called short fiction, or news, or movie criticism.

content -- filler up Now it's just pillow stuffing.

These days, content is supplied by "content providers," a term about as inspiring as a new mouse pad. Content is also being "repurposed" and "leveraged" all the time. And to handle all this content, we have, of course, "content managers" and "content producers."

But for anyone who takes their craft seriously, the idea of lumping together the arts with stock prices and government statistics under the generic category "content" is just plain silly. If not offensive. The word "content" has blundered its way into the Web world, linguistically blotting out the subtlety, life, and passion in the arts and all creative pursuits. It's so generic that it erases notions of quality and craft.

So, although many artists and writers do thrive on the 'net, we're obviously not having much influence on its lexicon.

All "content" is not created equal. (More)

Interview with Spaulding Gray


America's "talking man" dropped by The Gate's offices recently to, well, talk. 

Spaulding Gray was in town to perform his acclaimed monologue about learning to ski in the midst of an emotional meltdown -- "It's a Slippery Slope" (reviewed by the Chronicle and Examiner). He looked exactly as he looks on stage: neat checkered shirt, billowy silver hair, playful eyes. Over the last two decades the motor-mouthed New Englander has chronicled his life in 15 monologues (Including "Swimming to Cambodia," "Monster in a Box," and "Gray's Anatomy") and elevated autobiographical storytelling to a high art. He is already at work on monologue number 16 about one day in his life in Sag Harbor, Long Island where he currently lives with his sons Forrest and Theo and their mother Kathie.--JC 
Jeanne Carstensen: Is it true that you're claustrophobic? I've heard that. So I thought, my god, I'm going to put him in this little room...

Spalding Gray: I've had attacks of claustrophobia, but this room wouldn't bring one on. This is still a big room to me. I've probably had two or three of them in my life.  (More)