A Brave New World, Indeed

Rumblings about topics ranging from banned words to X-rays on email.
Publish date:

SAN FRANCISCO -- The latest string of record days for both the



S&P 500

ended today at one, which we know is the loneliest number. Alone and loving it, the

Nasdaq Composite Index

jumped 1.1%, notching its fifth record in the past six sessions. (For more, see today's

Market Roundup.)

One-Hit Wonders



lifted its much-ballyhooed practice of banning -- or, using a word beloved by its top editor Matt Winkler, bowdlerizing -- email profanities? A hedge fund manager reported getting an email via the message system featuring

George Carlin's

seven words you can't say on TV.



spokesperson said the ban hasn't been lifted and must have originated from another email system. "We choose not to control outside Internet messages," she says, evoking the warmth that the media conglomerate is famous for.

In a followup call, our source swore the email came from within


system: "Maybe they have


-like censors, which look at every fifth one," he says. "This was a choice set of words. Maybe everybody went nuts after the article


The Wall Street Journal

and overloaded their system."

God bless America and our right to profanity in all its many forms!


The Wall Street Journal

staff has done its usual stalwart job following the saga of

Martin Frankel

. But, pardon me, does anybody else really care this much?

I mean, it's an interesting tale but it lacks the cache of

Nick Leeson


Joseph Jett


Yasuo Hamanaka

. Maybe it's because he operated on Wall Street's frayed outer edges, but I just haven't heard the kind of chatter about Frankel to merit the kind of C-1 coverage the story is getting.

Media Notes and Things That Make You Go ... "Duh!"

Here's a little tale about some big media companies:

The New York Times

(NYT) - Get Report

(a minority shareholder in



) had a devil of a time getting our subscription/delivery stuff right during our move from Hoboken, N.J. to San Francisco. Long after my fiance called to cancel, they kept on delivering. My father reported a similar experience. Like him, I don't plan to pay for anything that came after the cancellation.

In contrast, the circulation department of oft-maligned

Dow Jones


deftly changed the address on my subscription to


so I missed nary an issue. Plus, they had

The Wall Street Journal

at my doorstep the Tuesday after the July 4 weekend, as promised.

Meanwhile, as I wait to see if my magazines make the cross-country switch, it dawns on me (Duh!) -- I didn't have to do


for the few online outlets to which I subscribe.

Duh! No. 2: I confess to sometimes falling into the trap of thinking working for


is just like being at any other news outlet, only with a different distribution "model." Then I get that instant feedback from readers for this column (which I can't imagine doing at any dead-tree shop I've worked at).

Finally, I went to my dentist shortly before the move and was amazed they now have


X-rays (via hardware provided by

Schick Technologies

(SCHK) - Get Report

). Wall Street is apparently less amazed, however. Schick's stock has tanked since hitting an all-time high of 20 on Nov. 3.

"The dentist is probably looking at them right now," the hygienist told me as I watched in wonder as the X-rays came up on the monitor. "And we can email them to you."

Maybe it really is a new world -- be it brave, ordered or made of cheese.