Winslet weaves a web following
By Sarah Koenig
Before Patrick DeDeyn sets off to work at a label printer in Buffalo, NY, he spends a little time indulging in a hobby of his. For about an hour, (between 4 or 5 on the weekends) he scours the Internet looking for the latest news on Kate Winslet, his favorite actress. Because aside from being an Electronic Prepress technician, DeDeyn, who just turned 30, is also Webmaster of a site dedicated to the star.
"I've always loved the Internet," he says, "and I have been a fan of Kate's since 'Heavenly Creatures.' After 'Titanic' came out, so many Kate fan-sites popped up on the net that I decided to join the fun."
Why would people devote time and even money to create a website devoted to an actress they don't know personally? To
Sarah Anne Packard, who runs two Kate Winslet "sister sites," it's simply another way to show your admiration for a celebrity, like starting a fan club was in the early Hollywood era. With the advent of the Internet, there's just one more medium to express your "fandom," as she puts it.
"It helps that a lot of her fans are young, and thus more likely to be online, doing sites and stuff," she says. "Anyway, pretty much every actress from the major to the obscure has some web tributes out there, and with Kate once she became a huge star it was inevitable that a lot of sites would come around."