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From Bitcoin to ChatGPT: Are we in another “Hype Cycle”?

I found the report, “How the media is covering ChatGPT: The Tow Center looked at how news organizations have been covering generative AI over the past six months,” and finished it immediately upon clicking the page. This article appears in Columbia Journalism Review, which is super specific to writers who work in communications and mass media and like to study and discuss the trade (AKA me, and idk maybe should I pledge to become a member??). In the report on media coverage of ChatGPT for Columbia Journalism Review, Jim Bartholomew and Dhrumil Mehta uncovers the term “Hype Cycle” in an interview with Felix M. Simon, a doctoral researcher at Oxford Internet Institute and Tow Center fellow.

This image is a screenshot of text from the article. What's included in the screenshot is the text below:

News reporting of new technologies often takes the pattern of a hype cycle, said Felix M. Simon, a doctoral researcher at the Oxford Internet Institute and Tow Center fellow. First, “It starts with a new technology which leads to all kinds of expectations and promises”. ChatGPT’s initial press release promised a chatbot that “interacts in a conversational way”. Next, media coverage branches into two extremes: “We have people say it’s the nearing apocalypse for industry XYZ or democracy,” or, alternatively, “it promises all kinds of utopias which will be brought about by the technology,” Simon said. Finally, after a few months, a more nuanced period of coverage—away from catastrophe or utopia—to discuss real-world impacts. “That’s when the cycle starts to cool off again.”

Since the 2016 election cycle, I have remembered getting swept into reading and discussing various “hype cycles” in the news. Sometimes I like to pause and reflect in the cycle, maybe even develop a fun, little obsession over a sensational news story, like with the Anna Delvey blog— other times I may become jaded and overwhelmed as I lose interest in it and let it pass till we can start to discuss the next hype cycle. I feel relieved that there is a term for it (“Hype Cycle” is the perfect choice of words), and the article even shares a few suggestions, including laying some ground rules in your publication’s style guides, of what different newsrooms can do to avoid reader fatigue.

Three screen grabs in a row from HBO Max's White Lotus with character Portia saying "I just feel like I just wanna meet someone who’s like you know, totally ignorant of the discourse. [chuckles] You know?"

In White Lotus, Portia tells her new friend, Albie, over dinner: “I just feel like I just wanna meet someone who’s like you know, totally ignorant of the discourse. You know?”

I’m not saying anything about Bitcoin nor ChatGPT here, which I could in another post if I wanted to (you probably don’t want me to), but the way we write and discuss these topics feel eerily similar, don’t they?

The Anna Delvey story made into a Netflix show; viewers find new treasure at archive

The Shondaland-produced Netflix limited series Inventing Anna about both the real and made up parts of a heist of New York City institutions orchestrated by one Anna Delvey Sorokin was released last Friday, February 11. When the story first became popular, I made a blog that served as an archive about Anna Delvey and con artist intrigue. With the release of the Netflix show, I was interviewed by a reporter for the Daily Beast about the “Cult of Anna Delvey Admirers.” The website,, that I founded received 60,000 new visitors in one week since the release of the show. I don’t know if that’s a lot, but it feels like a lot for me.

I remember when I first read Jessica Pressler’s “How Anna Delvey Tricked New York’s Party People,” published on The Cut in May 2018 (link), I couldn’t stop reading it till I finished. There hadn’t been a captivating long read in several years. I used to read literary websites like The Awl, The Hairpin, and The Toast every day; quite honestly, the internet has never felt the same to me since those publications closed. It’s more difficult to run a blog in 2022. Most people write stories on Instagram, but there’s no way to code in Instagram; it leaves your words feeling powerless.

When the story of Anna came out, I decided to do something a little different. I wasn’t working on any other writing projects at the time, so I decided to crate a website at to track the news story, create an archive of articles written about the anti-heroine, and practice writing SEO content. The website was a fun project that I did in my free time. I wanted to show how sometimes, with the exception of a stand-out piece like Pressler’s article, all these articles on the internet can start to look the same.

Hope you enjoy reading my entertainment news blog and the interview in the Daily Beast.


Moving day

Tabby cat lays on top of a cardboard box filled with books

For years, my writing portfolio site was parked at the only web host and content management system that is still available for free and allows you make edits in the backend: Tumblr. The only issue with hosting your website on Tumblr is that then your website is hosted on Tumblr. In 2022, I decided to buy hosting for a WordPress blog and get a fresh new start. My cat, Buck, may make the occasional appearance when he feels like it.

Julia Lipscomb