Lucas Tyler is a newcomer to journalism, but he already has his first exposé — himself.
The 33-year-old Canadian has become the first male reporter on the Naked News Web site (www.nakednews.com) — an Internet news site where women deliver the news as they do a striptease. A recent broadcast featured a weatherwoman talking about a cold wind blowing across Canada. She was wearing nothing but earmuffs and stockings — as well as a few goose bumps.
This is the news site "with nothing to hide," as the slogan goes. Naked News claims that 6 million people a month are turning to its broadcasts "for information."
"A lot of our audience are women," says Kathy Pinkert. "It was time to get a man in the mix."
The Wolf Files sat down with Tyler for a little one-on-one, to ask the questions everyone wants to know.
Q: So, why do the news in the raw?
A: Every news network has its schtick. CNN is 24 hours a day. We're naked. I think people come to us because they are curious. We're really different. But we are giving them real information. And if they are getting informed, then we really are doing our job.
Q: Since you're the first nude male journalist, I think you should describe your credentials.
A: Well, up until a few months ago, I was an investment adviser at a major Canadian bank [Tyler won't reveal which one]. But I wanted to do something more creative and artistic. I saw an add in The Toronto Star for this. And I just had to take the chance. It was scary. But it worked out. I don't have a background in journalism, but I'm a total news junkie. I'm excited.
Q: It's good to be excited about something. That leads me to my next question. Being nude on the air. Does that create any problems for a man? Are you concerned about how you'll look?
A: I'm not really thinking about my body when I'm on the air. It's not a sexual experience, and I am comfortable about how I look. I work out. Actually, the hardest part for me was not getting naked in front of the camera. It's reading off the TelePrompTer. It's hard to deliver the lines just right. I don't want to flub. That's my biggest problem.
Q: A lot of people make fun of President Bush for struggling with reading off the TelePrompTer. Can you relate to him in that regard?
A: It's tougher to do than you'd think, so I can sympathize. My problem isn't pronouncing the words, which he sometimes has a problem with. For me, it's tone level and making it conversational.
Q: Do you think it would be easier for the president to read in the nude? Do you have any advice for him?
A: He should speak more slowly and work on pronouncing every letter.
Q: What was the audition like?
A: The first audition I was in shorts. They just wanted me to read. There were dozens of guys going for the job. I didn't think I had a chance.
Q: So what was your first broadcast like?
A: I was standing. I thought I was going to be uncomfortable. But it was easy to make the transition from clothes to no clothes. I'm an open-minded and liberal person — not a nudist, just a guy who is very comfortable with himself. Being nude is just something in the background.
Q: Most people who are in front of the camera wear makeup. Do you? And, if so, where?
A: I wear no makeup at all … no place.
Q: Where do you expect to be in 10 years? What's your next job in journalism after the Naked News?
A: I'm not sure. This could be a steppingstone. We will have to wait and see.
The Weird News Roundup