The AE Agenda: New Hires, Site Fixes and Spam Wars

Still under there

Well, I hope everyone survived their holiday celebrations intact and you’ve sufficiently recovered from your New Year’s Day hangovers to enjoy this Monday.

It’s been over a month since our last site status report, or the AE Agenda as we like to call it. I’m sorry for the delay, but truthfully we had a great number of problems with our November 17th transition to a new website platform, Drupal 7, and for a long time there was not a lot of good news to share.

Thankfully, a lot of the major issues that were dogging us have finally been resolved. It’s not perfect admittedly – but it is better. At the end of this post you’ll find a list of what has now been fixed as well as a list of still open issues.

But before we get to that I wanted to take a moment to talk up my colleagues here at AfterElton, including some new staff members. First and foremost a big round of applause for snicks who ran the site pretty much all by himself over the holidays. And did so brilliantly. I count myself so lucky to work with this guy. (And he’s really funny to boot! Check out any of his Warehouse 13 coverage or his Sexy Jesus post just for example and you’ll see what I mean.)

Then there’s the amazing Ed Kennedy who from his secret internet communications bunker in West Virginia puts together our popular and increasingly influential Morning Meme six days a week. He’s also the driving force behind our Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook presence.

Intrepid couch potato Lyle Masaki brilliantly covers the television beat with his daily TV on Tap column, and Anthony Langford is our distinguished resident soap columnist. JT Riley has for several years brought us harrowing and hilarious tales from his Manhattan love life in his bi-weekly SGM Seeks LTR in NYC dispatches. But now he’s also offering up rather trenchant personal advice on a variety of subjects in the weekly Ask JT column.

My old colleague Brian Juergens returned to AfterElton this fall and among other things has given us insightful film reviews and his wildly popular American Horror Story recaps. (Even actors from the show are big fans.)

Brad Goreski with Jim HaltermanAlso this fall, the exceedingly well-connected Jim Halterman came on board as our West Coast Entertainment Reporter, and he’s brought us some great recent interviews, including Alan Ritchson, Chandler Massey, Sean Maher and Wilson Cruz. We’ll post his latest interview with the adorable Brad Goreski later today, so check back for it.

But we’re beefing up our Hollywood presence even more! Photographer Clinton Gaughran has been doing some great celebrity photo spreads for us, and soon joining Jim and Clint in L.A – the fashionably thin and often incendiary comic and writer Louis Virtel!

Louis is coming on board as our West Coast Entertainment Editor. You might be familiar with Louis’ writing for MovieLine. Or maybe you’re a fan of his video blog Verbal Vogueing. Or you might have seen him as a panel member on Chelsea Lately. (He’ll be back on that show for the January 18th episode.)

We’re thrilled to be adding his unique voice to the mix around here. He’ll be starting with us at the end of the month.

AE’s new West Coast Entertainment Editor Louis Virtel

Louis just expands on our already deep bench of talent here at AfterElton. I’ve gotten a few emails from members asking why I haven’t written much for the site since taking over as editor in October. Can you blame me? The truth is there are so many other better, funnier, more insightful writers working with me that where possible I’d rather leave the quarterbacking to my colleagues and play the cheerleader instead. And I can rock a pair of pom poms like nobody’s business!

Speaking of cheerleading, be sure and follow your favorite AfterElton writers (both past and present) via Twitter. You can get their deets on our Contributors Page.

Moving on to some housekeeping announcements. And warning: this next page will likely bore the crap out of anybody who isn’t a daily reader of AfterElton…

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