The publishing industry continues to have its problems in this modern era of electronic communication and the latest bastion of print to resort to cuts to stay in operation is New York Magazine.
New York Magazine is cutting its publication schedule from a weekly to a bi-weekly saving the reported $3.5 million in costs of publishing the extra 13 issues a year.
Unveiling management’s plans to re-design the magazine to employees, editor in chief Adam Moss was “wistful,” but confident.
He was somewhat sorrowful about losing 13 editions a year but said, “I would be more concerned if we didn’t address how the market and people’s reading habits have changed. I would not be doing this if I didn’t believe we could make a better magazine and continue to grow what we do both in print and online.”
But, Moss’ confidence aside, as The New York Times noted, “The punishing economics of being a stand-alone weekly can be explained in one word: Newsweek.”
With the spiraling failure that is Newsweek in mind (not to mention that of Time magazine), New York Magazine has fared better but not hugely so.
The Times reports that the magazine’s website revenues have risen 15 percent year over year and that it will soon eclipse the revenues of the print version of the magazine but that is mostly because print’s ad revenues have also fallen through the floor making the profits of the website take on an outsized appearance.
So, with the website growing and the print version flagging, the company is logically cutting the latter to fund growth of the former.
The Times says that the $3.5 million savings the magazine will see will go a long way to help improve the website experience.
Still, denizens at the magazine lament the necessary changes.
“All of us here are romantics about print,” said Anup Bagaria, who is a managing partner at the company that publishes the magazine. “The thing that stopped us from doing it in the past — we’ve been discussing this since back when Bruce was alive–is the emotional hit that came with it. But once we realized that this is a way for us to continue to do what we do, and maybe do it better, I think people got excited.”
The trouble of New York Magazine is yet one more example of the downward spiral of the publishing industry.