• Super Late Morning Show with The Lucas Brothers

    The Hotspot highlights Web content created by writers working under a WGA contract.

THE HOTSPOT

Super Late Morning Show with The Lucas Brothers
The Super Late Morning Show with The Lucas Brothers is subtitled "the morning show for people who wake up at noon." It's a Web comedy series starring, written by, and created by identical twin brothers Keith and Kenny Lucas. Their specialty is man-on-the-street interview comedy. They've honed these skills on their TRU TV series Friends of the People.


WEB COMEDY

Therapy Diary
Therapy Diary is an animated online series originally titled F*ck a Therapist. It's created by Jason Cilo and Meetinghouse Productions, best known as creators of the TRU TV series World's Dumbest. Therapy Diary began as a Twitter comedy feed and developed into a part of humor portal Chuckler.com. This series is funny even if you don't like stick figure animation.

Fresh Off the Plane
Fresh Off the Plane is a Web comedy series about a group of strangers from different countries sharing the same apartment in Los Angeles. They include a Brit, a Canadian, a Russian, an Australian, and an American. It's created by Ryan Turner Productions and describes itself as "Friends meets The Office." Its five episodes were produced by Turner and Alexandra Harris, and written by Adz Hunter.

Harder Than It Looks
Harder Than It Looks is an online sitcom about two young women self-described as "hot disasters." The two are played by Kelsy Darragh and Ayden Mayeri. Guest stars include T.J. Miller (Silicon Valley). Eight webisodes were written and directed by Seth Weitberg, best known as co-executive producer of Comedy Central's Drunk History. The series was created by Darragh, Mayeri, and Weitberg.

OnlyInHella
OnlyInHella calls itself a Web comedy series about hellish moments typically found only in Los Angeles. Rory Uphold, a L.A. native, created, wrote, directed, and starred in the 12-episode series. New Zealand actors Fleur Saville and David Lautour co-star. Season 2 is currently in the process of being funded via Kickstarter.


PODCASTS

Incomparable Radio Theater of the Air
The Incomparable Radio Theater of the Air is a podcast series of original radio shows that is self-described as "homage to classic mid-20th century radio while also giving a nod to modern pop culture." The series is written and hosted by David J. Loehr, directed by Serenity Caldwell, and produced by Jason Snell. It began as a weekly podcast about pop culture and developed into a scripted satirical series reminiscent of Firesign Theater.


EXPERIMENTAL

DJ Ecotone
Ben Mirin AKA DJ Ecotone creates music from a combination of natural animal sounds and his own voice. He was formerly the Artist in Residence at the Chicago Art Institute's Lurie Garden. Mirin's work is showcased on his website and is sponsored through a grant from National Geographic. He uses his compositions as an education tool as well as an entertainment medium. The educational aspect intends to inform listeners about the world's ecosystems. Mirin is also a science writer for publications that include Slate, Scientific American, and Smithsonian Magazine.


PORTFOLIO WEB SITES

Anand Varma Photography
Anand Varma is an Indian-American nature photographer whose subject matter focus is the world's wetlands. He's best known as a participant in projects for National Geographic. His portfolio website is a thing of beauty, particularly the slideshow on the opening page. The site also includes a blog, and videos of natural phenomenon such as volcanic eruptions and Patagonian landscapes.

ASHERJAY
On her portfolio website, Indian-born Asher Jay describes herself as a "creative conservationist." She's a designer, artist, writer, photographer and activist. Her photos and graphic artwork tell visually striking stories about the natural world. As a National Geographic Emerging Explorer, her subjects focus on environmental issues. Most inspiring are her efforts to combat illegal wildlife trafficking.

AARON HUEY IS A PHOTOGRAPHER
Aaron Huey is a Seattle-based National Geographic photojournalist and documentary photographer. He is known for his photographic series that documents his 154-day walk across America, covering 3,349 miles. And his portfolio website showcases other subjects that include urban street scenes, Native American reservations, as well as daily life in Afghanistan and Pakistan.


FASHION CULTURE ZINES

i-D VICE
i-D Vice is a zine devoted to fashion culture. It was founded by former Vogue art director Terry Jones in 1980 as i-D, a print fanzine celebrating UK punk culture. In 2012, Vice Media bought i-D and made it one of their prime online video channels. It includes music videos, fashion videos, and documentaries. Its music section includes artist interviews and original music mixes. The rest includes in-depth articles on a variety of cultural topics.

Refinery29
Refinery29 is a Manhattan-based digital zine aimed at female fashion, style, and beauty. It was founded in 2005 by Justin Stefano and Philippe von Borries. Refinery29 offers original video series that include Behind the SEAMS with Gwen Stefani, and Web sitcom Shitty Boyfriends. Other topic sections include Beauty, Living, Health, Entertainment, Tech, and News.


INTERACTIVE JOURNALISM

CNN iReport
CNN iReport is a part of CNN.com that offers contribution opportunities to aspiring citizen journalists. An posted iReport begins with a submission from a CNN audience member. Each submission is then verified and cleared by CNN iReport producers. Grassroots digital journalism at its best.

ProPublica
New York-based ProPublica describes itself as an "independent non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest." It was founded by Paul Steiger, a former Wall Street Journal managing editor. It is now led by Stephen Engelberg, a former managing editor of The Oregonian. In 2011, ProPublica won the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting, the first such prize for news stories not published in print.