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May 20, 2009


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Does the online shift affect/expand word counts? It's something I'm always curious about. Most critics I've spoken to have acknowledged shrinking word counts have made their jobs more difficult.

However, without the space crunch that print has, no one seems to give more space online. It's the damndest thing, publishers tend to bring along all of the negatives of print into new media and not take advantage of any of the opportunities the new frontiers offer.

On the "another white male" front. I hope you keep your word to include more plurality in critical voices. I think it was a missed opportunity (Beer's dismissal of Unveiled is a good example of the need of more voices), but time will ultimately tell.

I haven't been exactly quiet on that issue, but I'll try to wait until at least your second week in the new chair before giving you the business. :)

Rob Kozlowski

Has anyone noticed that Hedy Weiss has written an architecture story and a book review in the last few days? If your publication is not in bankruptcy, you're in pretty good shape all in all. And I figured there was absolutely no way a new theater writer was going to be full time. So congratulations to me for being right!

I will keep you in my feed. Frankly I'm stunned you even had time to post this entry!


I'm well aware that print is dying, but the fact that Time Out Chicago hired someone in a part-time position instead of just having a bunch of freelancers tells me that they're not doing too bad.

I don't think that most theater critics are female. I'm just going to throw that out there. Look at New York City and there are three major female theater critics (four if you count the one at Village Voice, five if you count the one at Entertainment Weekly). And having an overabundance of white critics can be a problem with some shows. For example, I had to review a production of "Fences" and all of the critics were white (I was the only female critic). I personally felt as though some of the play I could have connected with better if I wasn't Caucasian.

And I would like to add that I did not write the comment about "Three Cheers for Kris Vire!" But I will keep Storefront Rebellion in my feed.


Kris, thanks for your analysis. There's a big diversity even among "middle age white" critics. Some work harder than others. Some are gay. Some are assholes. Some know what they're talking about, and some don't. I don't think the only goal should be to meet quotas in terms of "we need someone young and hip" or "we need a female African American critic." I think the more important goal is to get competent people who are going to write interesting things - whether it's for Time Out or any other media outlet in Chicago.

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Who? What?

  • Kris Vire
    I write about theater for Time Out Chicago. I write more about it here.

    Any opinion expressed here is solely that of the author or commenter. No opinion expressed here can be assumed to represent the opinion of Time Out Chicago magazine.

@krisvire on Twitter

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