A Faster Times writer named Oliver Miller came out today as the AOL TV blogger fired for upsetting a “Hollywood star” who is obviously maybe-mayoral candidate Alec Baldwin.
In October, Mr. Miller fired off one of his ten daily articles–in The AOL Way–with a glib assessment of an anecdote about Mr. Baldwin fellow actor Jim Parsons told a late night talk show host. (The post, which appears to have a cryptic Ireland Baldwin joke in its URL, now redirects to the AOL TV homepage.)
Today, on AOL’s homepage, I am accused of insulting actor Jim Parsons for sending him a congratulatory gift basket, inside of which I added a card that read “Congratulations you talented, charming bastard.”
I thought that was a joke. I think Parsons knew that. I think anyone on Earth could see that. Except the eighth degree, black belt idiots that compose the AOL homepage.
I’m still a loyal AOL user. In spite of the fact that its homepage content is written by the dumbest bastards in the world.
At the time, Mr. Baldwin was a paid spokesperson for AOL, although his paycheck went to charity. He still maintains the HuffPo blog, which is like being an unpaid spokesperson for The AOL Huffington Post Company, right?
In Mr. Miller’s defense, the working conditions at AOL had driven him more insane than how you feel when your 11 year-old daughter won’t call you back. Mr. Miller wrote in The Faster Times:
I had panic attacks; we all did. My fellow writers would fall asleep, and then wake up in cold sweats. I worked the graveyard shift — 11PM to 7 or 8AM or later — but even the AOL slaves who wrote during the day would report the same universal experience. Finally falling asleep after work, they would awake with a jump, certain that they had forgotten something — certain that they hadn’t produced their allotted number of articles every thirty minutes. One night, I awoke out of a dead sleep, and jumped to my computer, and instantly began typing up an article about David Letterman. I kept going for ten minutes, until I realized I had dreamed it all. There was no article to write; I was simply typing up the same meaningless phrases that we all always used: “LADY GAGA PANTLESS ON LATE NIGHT WITH DAVID LETTERMAN,” or some such.
Mr. Miller was fired in the wake of the Baldwin scandal, but many of his colleagues were soon put out of their misery in AOL’s post-merger, mass-email layoffs. AOL TV was recently taken over by Michael Hogan, who, with a decade of working at Vanity Fair under his belt, is probably really awesome at never making any celebrities angry.