Media: The Word on the Street

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The Independent Culture
CONRAD BLACK held a lunch for senior executives in the Telegraph group at which the esoteric discussion over coffee moved on to how the same journalists are viewed differently in Britain and north America. Black was interested that British journalists who were merely respected over here were stars in America. Whom did he have in mind? His answer was Vicky Ward, the young feature writer, whose occasional pieces appear in the Daily Mail.

Miss Ward is indeed a hard-working, talented journalist. She is also married to the nephew of Conrad Black.

OLD HIPPIES don't fade away; they get into merchandising. Felix Dennis, veteran of the seventies Oz Trial, and now (as then) magazine publisher, will launch next February a glossy women's title, code-named Project Denise, in which everything featured on the magazine's pages will be available to order either by phone, off-the-page or on-line.

It will be edited by Rachel Shattock, formerly of SHE and Cosmopolitan, who says the "see-it, want-it, buy-it" factor will be "irresistible to women".

THE SPICE Girls have been all over the pages of The Sun like a rash lately, promoting this week's London concerts.

In the fearless style of PR-led pop reporting, we have been treated to a series of puffs like the Sun picture exclusive which shamelessly included the cover of the gig programme. But The Sun strangely failed to report the awards the girls picked up at the Smash Hits Poll Winners bash.

The Sun lacked space to record that The Spice Girls were voted worst group. Melanie C won Worst Female singer, Worst single, Worst video, Worst- dressed person and Most tragic haircut.

THE SUN'S owner, the suavely dressed, excellently coiffed Rupert Murdoch, should be treating the family to a slap-up meal.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that News Corp's rising share price has had a benign effect on the Murdoch brood. In the past six weeks the family wealth, it reports, has risen by more than $5 billion to $17.5 billion.