I pioneered the new genre of Instagram food and scenery reviews 10-years ago

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May 5, 2024- by Steven Greer

An Instagram guy in Las Vegas who goes by “Vegas Pauly C” has made a name for himself by muckraking on bad casinos while also promoting good things like new restaurants. Here, he is showing people a new restaurant. He also goes throughout the desert around Vegas to show people scenery or way-off-the-strip hotels. He gives viewer a local’s guide to where to eat, gamble, stay, etc.

There are numerous other Instagram restaurant reviewers I find interesting. It is an entire genre now of POV quick looks at the bites. The stodgy newspaper food critic, or even Michelin star ratings, are obsolete now.

It reminds me of how I was so ahead of the curve. This is exactly what I did 10-years ago in New York with my BatteryPark.TV. I would both report on corruption by The Battery Park City Authority, like this Vegas Pauly C reports on bad casinos, and I also would promote local restaurants and other interesting things. Unfortunately, we did not have Instagram and social media back then. I relied on my little website, which did not get much traction.

We also did not have good cameras on the iPhone then. I had to use my large professional Sony mirrorless camera, which was bulky and inconvenient.

The big restaurateurs like Danny Meyer and Stephen Starr got it. They understood the importance of what I was doing, perhaps more than I did. I was just goofing around, not realizing I was changing how restaurants were reviewed.

I have often mentioned how I was quite well-connected with the restaurant industry of Manhattan. You see it with this guy in Las Vegas too. He is one of the most prominent figures in the restaurant and casino industries.

I was ahead of the curve by a decade. My only competition were a couple of local newspapers, but they were doing everything wrong. They were relying on their print stories that no one wanted to read. Everyone knew they were propaganda because the local governments gave them all of their advertising business. Therefore, they would not properly report on local events. It was all state-sponsored media. None of them bothered to get into video either.

Again, we did not have easy-to-make video editing apps and portable cameras. It was quite an ordeal what I did. I used clunky Adobe Premier. These days, TikTok and Instagram make it very easy to produce a film with graphics, etc.

Around 2016, before I left New York, I was pretty sophisticated at this. I was getting exclusive access to the top of the Silverstein World Trade Center towers or their Four Seasons Hotel while it was under construction. The developer behind the multi-billion-dollar Oculus Port Authority hub gave me access before it was open. The Port Authority was upset with them for letting me film. I was interviewing celebrities.(Footnote 1) It was all pretty interesting.

It has been so long that I have forgotten it all myself until writing this. I have gone from being a pioneer in news and internet media in New York City to filming my small backyard in the middle of nowhere Florida. I don’t think my Sandhill Cranes quite appreciate my greatness.

Footnote 1- I filmed a pilot with The Sopranos star Steve Schirripa. It was my idea to talk about the show’s production. He liked it so much that he and other cast members have a touring show for small live audiences. Even Jerry Seinfeld is now talking bout the production of Seinfeld. Yep. I created that genre too.

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June 20, 2024- I had forgotten about this interview. Major Food Group is now the biggest name in restaurants. Numerous have opened in Miami, Boca Raton, etc.

As I mentioned before, I really did pioneer this whole genre of food reviews in the Internet. Now, with the ability to make videos easily, everyone is doing it.

It might seem obvious now, but before this, the only way people got news about restaurants was through highly-filtered propaganda from New York Times food reviewers like Pete Wells, etc. I recall at the time how Pete was getting nervous by the rise of my relevance.

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