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Phil Rosenthal

Phil Rosenthal
Phil Rosenthal, the Chicago Tribune's media columnist, has been a working journalist since 17, when he talked his way into a regular freelance gig with the Waukegan News-Sun while still in high school.

As he earned his journalism degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Rosenthal covered sports, spot news and media for The Capital Times in Madison, Wis. He spent 11 years at the Los Angeles Daily News, first as a sports writer, then a television critic and ultimately as a columnist whose work was nationally distributed by the New York Times News Service. He returned to his hometown and joined the Chicago Sun-Times in 1996, serving as deputy sports editor, sports columnist and t...
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Phil Rosenthal, the Chicago Tribune's media columnist, has been a working journalist since 17, when he talked his way into a regular freelance gig with the Waukegan News-Sun while still in high school.

As he earned his journalism degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Rosenthal covered sports, spot news and media for The Capital Times in Madison, Wis. He spent 11 years at the Los Angeles Daily News, first as a sports writer, then a television critic and ultimately as a columnist whose work was nationally distributed by the New York Times News Service. He returned to his hometown and joined the Chicago Sun-Times in 1996, serving as deputy sports editor, sports columnist and television critic. He moved to the Chicago Tribune in 2005.

Highlights of his career include modeling swimsuits for Sports Illustrated supermodel Vendela, getting a manicure from Lorena Bobbitt, smoking cigars with Jack Paar and introducing his mother to Johnny Carson.

Rosenthal is virtually certain no one actually reads biographies all the way through, and would congratulate you for making it this far.

An award-winning journalist, he once saved the life of one of his three brothers and was kicked off his high school newspaper. He was an extra in the Oscar-winning movie "Ordinary People" and, although it appears he wound up on the cutting-room floor, he did get paid and fed and can claim to be just three degrees from Kevin Bacon. Rosenthal is married and has two young children, who don't yet read his column but recognize his picture in the paper. They are not yet embarrassed to be related to him.

Rosenthal Field in north suburban Lake Bluff is named for Rosenthal's late father, a former youth baseball coach and elementary school board member, not him.

Phil Rosenthal's media column appears Sunday, Wednesday and Friday.
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Top Phil Rosenthal Articles

Displaying items 12-22
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Blurred lines in music and advertising

    The Federal Trade Commission is accusing DirecTV of deceptively advertising how much its service actually costs. Also, there is only one Rob Lowe. A jury ruled that Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams ripped off the late Marvin Gaye's music in their 2013...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Bad NFL bet, King's power play and more

     Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Bad NFL bet, King's power play and more
    After investing five years and $50 million to lure an NFL franchise to Los Angeles, AEG abandoned plans to build a downtown stadium. Pity to waste that kind of money and not even have Jay Cutler to show for it. Burger King unilaterally removed soft...
  • Apple Watch? Apple Pay.

    Apple Watch? Apple Pay.
    The Apple Watch was unveiled Monday with prices from $349 to $17,000. Its screen can tell the time, your pulse, headlines, your schedule — everything except which person is about to mug you. If the Obama library team wants to wait until after...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Baby elephant's walking papers

    Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Baby elephant's walking papers
    Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus plans to phase out elephant acts by 2018, acknowledging public concern over animal welfare. No plans, however, to get a larger car for the clowns. It's weird to think of the circus no longer being a venue for...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: A tower by any other name ...

    Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: A tower by any other name ...
    It's exciting to know that for about $1.5 billion, you can buy the Willis Tower, put your own name on it and take satisfaction in knowing millions of people will call it the Sears Tower. Andrew Lack is considering a return to the top post at NBC News,...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call takes on Oprah, McDonald's and the Cubs

    Harpo Studios' pending closure should be no surprise. Still it doesn't bode well for Chicago's bid to become home to the Oprah library. Police stations are being used as a "safe haven" to complete transactions arranged on Craigslist. The secure...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Gold, cold and Verizon's old code

    Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Gold, cold and Verizon's old code
    Recent price fluctuations suggest the market is divided in its view of gold. Some swear it's the answer in uncertain times. Others insist it's actually black and blue. Vince Vaughn and Lady Gaga were among those dipping into chilly Lake Michigan for...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: You gotta hand it to Apple

    Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: You gotta hand it to Apple
    Apple has announced a "special event" for March 9, presumably to unveil its smartwatch. You know, a watch. That thing that told you the time before you had a phone. The event is set for 10 a.m. Pacific Time. That means the little hand is on the 10 and...
  • Blue Cross has you covered, except when it doesn't

    Blue Cross has you covered, except when it doesn't
    Nice that Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois is sorry about the people whose data was exposed in Anthem's data breach. But if all parties connected to health care were truly as committed to protecting patient privacy as they say, hospital gowns...
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call has a Grippo on Depot, PepsiCo and Zeppo

    Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call has a Grippo on Depot, PepsiCo and Zeppo
    Local law firm Grippo & Elden said Tuesday it is merging with Shook, Hardy & Bacon, of Kansas City, Mo. Terms were not disclosed, but a combo of Grippo and Shook, Hardy had to be a handshake deal, right? Home Depot posted a fourth-quarter profit of $1....
  • Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Honda's CEO and Disney visitors pay the price

    Phil Rosenthal's Margin Call: Honda's CEO and Disney visitors pay the price
    Honda's Takanobu Ito is out as president and CEO. Honda ran into trouble amid a defective air-bag scandal. It turns out Ito also did not deploy properly. Single-day tickets for Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom visitors age 10 and older are rising to...