Courtney Pulitzer, 31, owns Courtney Pulitzer Creations (www.pulitzer.com), a New York City firm that operates Cocktails with Courtney and publishes The Cyber Scene. The latter is a newsletter that gives the scoop on Internet industry social events worldwide; the former are invite-only parties that Pulitzer's company puts on for the best and brightest in the digital age. She is for the cyber-social-life what her distant, famed ancestor, Joseph Pulitzer, was for journalism.
Realizing that your forte is the Internet, rather than Hollywood and rock 'n' roll venues, how do the two social scenes compare?
They're similar in that entrepreneurs in the Internet industry are gregarious, socially oriented and forward-thinking. Of course, those are broad generalizations and there's still a bit of the geek mentality in the Internet industry-some people don't have strong social skills and are more timid. In the entertainment world, people are in tune with how they look. With the Internet, there are more business-people now who dress very sharply, but there are still those who walk around in their loafers and rumpled shirts. And I don't think you'd see that at a rock party.
On average, you attend 15 parties per week. Some are yours, many aren't. Is the average entrepreneur attending a lot of parties?
The people who are running businesses aren't out at all the parties. One reason is that the industry is getting more segmented. Social events used to be lumped together in one category: the Internet. And people went to as many as they could, because that's all there was. Now there are Internet-specific parties geared toward the music industry, finance or IT-so CEOs can choose which events they want to go to, as opposed to all of them. They're running their businesses, and people really do work long hours. It's even hard for me to get out of my office to go to all the parties.
Why do entrepreneurs need to know who's attending what party and where?
It helps people keep in touch with what's going on in their industry on a very local level. You're learning about all sorts of companies that may never make it to any print publication, or maybe not even any online publication. Just because a journalist didn't write about them, doesn't mean they aren't important. So it helps people find business relationships locally, below the radar screen.
Geoff Williams has written for numerous publications, including Entrepreneur, Consumer Reports, LIFE and Entertainment Weekly. He also is the author of Living Well with Bad Credit.