Press Box

Buzzing Howie Kurtz’s Buzzometer

Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz asserts today that Web journalism is all but dead and that “Slate barely registers in the buzz department.”

Z’at so, Howie? One rough measure of a publication’s “buzz” is the number of mentions it receives in Kurtz pieces, so I fired up my Nexis account and performed a Boolean search of Kurtz’s Post byline and the names of several magazines. During the past 12 months–presumably Slate’sbuzzless year–Kurtz mentioned Slate 16 times. Slate’s cybercompetitor, Salon, rated 18 mentions. If Slate has indeed so completely fallen off Kurtz’s buzzometer, what assessment awaits the nation’s other politics and culture magazines? Here’s the breakdown of Kurtz mentions over the past year:

Atlantic Monthly: 2 mentions
New Republic: 13 mentions
The New Yorker: 13 mentions
Weekly Standard: 17 mentions

But enough about the Slate buzz in Kurtz’s ear–what about the Kurtz buzz in Slate’s ears? The rate at which the man makes us vibrate is increasing, according to a Nexis search. During the past year, we’ve mentioned him 28 times compared to 19 the year before. Way to go, Howie!

Illustration by Mark Alan Stamaty.