• Toronto, TMX Broadcast Centre
  • November 28, 2013 - 18:30


Simon Houpt
The senior media writer for The Globe and Mail moderated this discussion.



Photos: Chris Young

November 28, 2013
Discussion: 6:30 p.m.  |    Reception: 8:00 p.m.
TMX Broadcast Centre - Gallery, The Exchange Tower, 130 King St. W., Toronto

It's driving eyeballs to websites and media organizations love it. From Miley Cyrus to Gwyneth Paltrow, media outlets are betting--for better and for worse--that names in the news will sell. Is celebrity gossip real news or simply “click bait” in the digital universe? Malene Arpe, who writes the Toronto Star Stargazing pages; Alison Eastwood, editor-in-chief of Hello! Canada; Jonathan Kay, comment pages editor of the National PostBen Mulroney, anchor of CTV's etalk, explored this phenomenon with moderator Simon Houpt, senior media writer with The Globe and Mail.



MALENE ARPE, who has worked for Torstar in various capacities for some 20 years, writes about pop culture and celebrity follies in the Stargazing pages for the Toronto Star and online at thestar.com.

ALISON EASTWOOD is the editor-in-chief at Hello! Canada, the weekly celebrity publication. Eastwood has been with the award-winning magazine since its launch in 2006 and has played an integral role in establishing Hello! as the number-one English Canadian magazine on newsstands. Originally a native of England where she first launched her journalism career, Eastwood has a strong record of accomplishment as a magazine editor. She is the winner of several journalism awards, and has a BA in English Literature from York University in England.

JONATHAN KAY is comment pages editor for the Toronto-based Canadian daily newspaper National Post, a columnist for the Post op-ed page, a blogger for the Post web site, a book author and editor, and a public speaker. He is also a regular contributor to Commentary Magazine and the New York Post. His freelance articles have been published in a variety of US publications including Newsweek, The New Yorker, Salon.com, The New Republic, Harper's Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, The Weekly Standard, The Literary Review of Canada, The National Interest and The New York Times.

BEN MULRONEY is anchor of CTV's etalk. A veteran of entertainment reporting for more than a decade, Montreal-born Ben Mulroney delivers entertainment news daily from the etalk studio in Toronto, and travels the world to interview stars – reporting from red carpet events, including the Oscars®, Golden Globes® and Juno Awards. He is also host and co-creator of etalk 20, a weekly two-hour radio show that airs on 11 Bell Media Radio stations across Canada. Mulroney has joined Live! with Kelly host Kelly Ripa as co-host on the daytime talk show, from Banff, AB and New York City. In June 2012, Mulroney added the role of contributor to his resume for the Weekend Edition of ABC's Good Morning America (GMA). Mulroney was also the host of Canadian Idol for six seasons and reported on entertainment news from the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games for CTV.


SIMON HOUPT is The Globe and Mail's senior media writer, charged with covering the industry's transformation. He began his career with The Globe in 1999 as the paper's New York arts correspondent, covering the cultural life of that city through Canadian eyes. After 10 years on the beat, including six as a weekly columnist, he returned to the Globe's Toronto news room in the summer of 2009 to join the Report on Business as its advertising and marketing reporter. Prior to The Globe, Houpt worked on the CBC-TV new media current affairs show Undercurrents. He is the author of Museum of the Missing: A History of Art Theft.