SEEING DOUBLE ON ‘BEAT THE PRESS’

Rightwing doyenne Arianna Huffington has been busy flogging a TV project dubbed “Beat the Press,” which she plans to co-host with post-feminist firebrand Camille Paglia. Huffington promises a “very satirical look” at the news, in which, among other things, she and Paglia will “crack a whip at the political correctness and the wolf-pack mentality permeating the media.”

But before the first cat-o-nine-tails stings the backs of the media establishment, Huffington will have to fight for the right to use the name “Beat the Press.” NBC News has sent her two cease-and-desist letters claiming the name is too close to the network’s own “Meet the Press.” Meanwhile, Fox News exec Emily Rooney has been developing her own newsmag dubbed “Beat the Press,” and claims that because she filed the title with the U.S. Trademark Commission she has first dibs on it.

Huffington says she registered the name with the Writers Guild, but even if she can’t use “Beat the Press,” the project will launch. “The NBC challenge is silly. This is satire,” she says. “Maybe I should call it ‘Mace the Nation.'”

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