Virginia Heffernan is a writer at the New York Times who was an early fan of lonelygirl15 and promoted the series through her Screens Blog on nytimes.com. Her July 28th blog on the LG15 saga marked the first mainstream media attention to the project.
Virginia closely monitored the internet sleuthing hunt to determine whether the series was "real" or "fake" which occurred at the original Lonelygirl15.com Phorum and then later at The Children of Anchor Cove forum. Virginia herself appeared to cling to the hope that Bree was real.
On the evening of September 12th, 2006, articles by Ms. Heffernan and Tom Zeller Jr. at the New York Times, and by Richard Rushfield at the Los Angeles Times, broke the story that Jessica Lee Rose was Bree, and the names of the Creators. Grant Steinfeld was the primary source for the NY Times article.
Virginia met Alissa Brooke in real life after inviting her to a symposium on web privacy at NYU, which occured just days after Bree's unmasking.
On Jan. 24th, 2007, Heffernan wrote a review in the New York Times about what lonelygirl15 had become in the months since Bree's discovery. Famous blogger Milowent was quoted offering his approval of Katharine McPhee's recent appearance in the series. Heffernan's take is that the series is "inventive, with highs and lows. On balance, it's entertaining." She also praised McPhee's acting and said that Jess Rose "has become a truly terrific actress."