Remember Ted Williams, the homeless man with the golden radio voice who went from panhandling to big bucks deals to national television programs over the course of this week? The original YouTube video of Williams was posted by a Columbus Dispatch reporter, racking up 12 million pageviews in the matter of a few short days. At the time, The Atlantic's Alexis Madrigal praised the newspaper for its forward-thinking, new media-friendly approach: "When a reporter came across a homeless man with a stunning Golden Age of Radio voice, they did not write a milquetoast profile or use it as a news peg for a series on the plight of the homeless in Ohio. Instead, they made a short, cheap video of the man, Ted Williams, and posted it to their website." But it appears the Dispatch has had second thoughts about being at the epicenter of a viral sensation: As of yesterday afternoon, attempting to view the original video on YouTube would reveal the above takedown notice: "The video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by The Dispatch."
The Columbus Dispatch recently posted this remarkable video interview with Ted Williams, a homeless man with a remarkable voice for radio. After demonstrating his talent, Williams provides some backstory:
When I was 14 I kind of listened to one of our area radio announcers, and I went as a field trip to go meet the guy, and he looked nothing like what he sounded like. So I asked him about that, and he said to me, "listen, radio is defined -- theater of mind." And so when he said "theater of mind," I just said, well, hey. I can't be an actor, I can't be an on-air personality, but the voice just became something of a development over the years and I went to school for it. And then alcohol and drugs and a few other things became a part of my life. I've got two years clean, and I'm trying hard to get it back. And hopefully somebody from one of these television or radio stations will say, 'hey, I need a voice-over,' or ' I need something.'As of posting, the top-rated YouTube comment comes from a man who says he owns a Hollywood talent agency that specializes in voiceovers, and he says he knows "some people in Columbus who work in the field I can probably hook him up with." Hopefully Williams' talent will be able to find a home. (Columbus Dispatch via BuzzFeed)