Copyright 2000 Daily News, L.P.
Daily News (New York)
May 12, 2000, Friday SPORTS FINAL EDITION
SECTION: BUSINESS; Pg. 51 PRINT OF THE CITY
LENGTH: 597 words
HEADLINE: EATING LUNCH, MENDING FENCES
BYLINE: BY CELIA MCGEE
Conde Nast insiders closely eyeballing Steve Florio's sitdown with Donald Trump in Conde Nast's curvaceous cafeteria this week suspected it wasn't just a meal between old pals.
While Florio chalked the meeting up to a longstanding friendship, company insiders buzzed that it was more of a peacekeeping mission.
Florio's invitation was said to be an attempt to placate The Donald for cutting remarks made about him by the cafeteria's world-famous architect,Frank Gehry.
Gehry recently said he's working with Guggenheim Museum director Thomas Krens to bring a Guggenheim branch to the Hudson River waterfront. Two days before the Trump lunch, Gehry was interviewed by New Yorker architecture critic Paul Goldberger, who has profiled Gehry in the new Vanity Fair. In that conversation, Gehry told Goldberger he'd turned down design commissions from Trump several times this year - and three weeks ago told Trump he'd never work for him.
Next thing cafeteria diners knew, Trump was munching in their midst.
Florio was out of the office yesterday, but spokeswoman Maurie Perl said, "the lunch was arranged prior [to the interview]. These are two isolated incidents. They could have just as easily gone to The Four Seasons, where they usually have lunch."
James Ledbetter gets a corporate apartment in London, and his bosses at The Industry Standard get a headache.
Ledbetter is departing as chief of the hyper-successful magazine's New York bureau to spread the gospel of the self-labeled "newsmagazine of the Internet economy" as top editor of a new European edition.
Editor in chief Jonathan Weber has been back at home base in San Francisco trying to decide how to fill the coveted slot at the magazine, which has greatly expanded its Silicon Alley outpost during Ledbetter's tenure.
The internal favorite is said to be Thomas Goetz, who gave up a byline at The Wall Street Journal for the 2-year-old Web-watcher. But Weber is also contemplating a different editorial plum for Goetz, and is talking to a "short list of prominent external candidates" about the New York post as well, a staffer said.
"It's all happening inside the head of Jonathan Weber," demurred Goetz.
"A lot of intellectual spade work is being done in terms of how to configure the New York office," Ledbetter said. "It may not be one single person."
Ledbetter, of course, has his own headache - the complaint filed by New York Press CEO and editor in chief Russ Smith over Ledbetter's use of newyorkpress.net for his independent, New York-centric news aggregator Web site. Greedily consumed by fourth-estate insiders, it now disclaims "Not affiliated with the New York Press Association, nor the weekly New York Press."
Ledbetter has filed a counter claim against Smith. "There's supposed to be a decision before I leave" by late May, he said. "I could certainly still cover [the New York media] from London, since the papers hit the Web by 7 a.m."
CUTTING TO CHASE
Former Talk magazine and New York Observer editor Lisa Chase is going entrepreneurial.
Together with former Outside magazine colleague Laura Hohnhold, Chase is starting an outfit that will provide editorial expertise to book publishing and media companies.
Chase, who's already been consulting on Offspring, Hearst and Dow Jones' new Smart Money parenting spinoff, left Talk after a disagreement with editor in chief Tina Brown over a Unabomber article Chase was editing.
Chase and Hohnhold are calling their firm The Editor's Room - The E.R., for
short. That's what it says on their letterhead.
FBI Most Wanted