Universal Press Syndicate's "DIGITAL SLOB" Column Gains Newspaper Readers, Generates 'Net Buzz Worldwide

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Recent print clients for "Digital Slob," a weekly column distributed by Universal Press Syndicate, include The (Shreveport) Times, a 66,000 circulation Gannett daily in Louisiana, and the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, a 60,000 circulation afternoon daily in the Aloha State.

"Digital Slob," the humorous technology column distributed by Universal Press Syndicate and written by Curt Brandao, is gaining newspaper readers in the United States and generating worldwide buzz on the Internet.

The most recent print clients for the feature include The (Shreveport) Times, a 66,000 circulation Gannett daily in Louisiana, and The Honolulu Star-Bulletin, a 60,000 circulation afternoon daily in the Aloha State.

And the universal appeal of "Digital Slob" is drawing hits to digitalslob.com from countries as diverse as Pakistan, Portugal, Thailand, South Korea, China, Italy, Germany, France, Norway, India, Australia and Britain.

The "Digital Slob" Web site now includes MP3 audio — short, 4-minute essays on Brandao's mom, what Slobs can learn from Martha Stewart and the future dating rituals of bald men.

In his weekly column, Brandao maintains that the Digital Age is making slobs seem respectable, and making respectable people seem deranged. And it's clear which side he is on.

"I'm so lazy, I microwave frozen dinners by punching in '2:22’ on the timer instead of '2:00’ because it's easier to hit '2’ three times in a row than to refocus and reposition my index fingers for the '0’ lower down on the pad," he writes.

As Paul Boutin, freelance writer for The New York Times, Slate and Wired said, "Curt's the kind of guy whose dream technology is a TiVo that knows when to order pizza 45 minutes in advance."

A recent "Slob" column that took a satirical look at GMail, Google's new controversial e-mail service, got a wave of attention among bloggers, some as far away as Ireland.

The 36-year-old columnist and editor has been in the newspaper business for a dozen years. He earned a master's degree in communications in 1992 from The University of Tennessee, where he drew the daily comic strip "Cuff & Rubin," a national finalist in the Charles M. Schulz College Cartoonist contest.

“I don’t just write about digital cameras or PDAs in IT-speak binary code. I write about my grandmother, the Oscars, high school, loose change, wisdom teeth, time travel, handwriting and ketchup, and how it all relates to how we live now in the Digital Age. ‘Technology behavior’ has now become pervasive enough to mock,” Brandao said.

For large papers, “Digital Slob” can draw more readers to their extensive, but too often stuffy, technology sections. And for smaller papers, it offers an amusing, easily accessible high-tech presence.

"Digital Slob" is available every week for immediate download, e-mail or physical delivery via Universal Press Syndicate's One-Shot Service.

Just contact the Universal Press Syndicate's sales administrator by phone (800-255-6734 ext: 6929) or e-mail (salesdirector@amuniversal.com) to receive pricing, distribution and delivery information.

For more information about "Digital Slob," go to digitalslob.com.

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