Reaching Young Readers
A new initiative by MPA gives free digital editions of magazines to college students hoping to convert them into magazine readers and to test the viability and popularity of digital delivery. Five publishers are participating in this initiative. Read more

Ideas archive

World's First Mag
The Gentleman's Magazine was the first general-interest magazine. It was founded in London by Edward Cave in January, 1731. The original complete title was The Gentleman's Magazine: or, Trader's monthly intelligencer. More>>

More Facts

Merrill Lynch report on the state of the newspaper industry does not see online representing over 50% of total newspaper ad revenues until more than 30 years from now.More>>

More Numbers
  • ASME's Top 40 Magazine Covers
  • 30 Most Notable Launches of 2005
  • Talking Magazine Videos
  • An Illustrated History of Magazine Covers and Cover Lines
  • Magazine First Issue Archive
  • Poynter
  • Folio Magazine
  • Magazine Publishers of America
  • American Society of Business Press Editors
  • Mr Magazine
  • Beyond the Page
  • Designing Magazines
  • NewsWatch India
  • Free Newspapers
  • The Editors Weblog
  • FishBowl NY
  • International Magazine News
  • Newspaper Index Blog
  • MagCulture
  • Magazine Daze
  • Magazine Enterprise 360
  • Online Press Gazette
  • Magazine Symposium 2007
  • Magazine Literacy
  • Magazine death blog
  • Premiere Issues Project

  • Global Voices Online - The world is talking. Are you listening?


    Why Magpie? Because I like observing these sleek birds with a tapering tail. And like Magpies, I live with the burden of being a 'chatter', even though I believe that I am rather shy, reserved and unobtrusive :).

    Friday, June 30, 2006

    LAUNCHPAD: 2 hindi titles from Infomedia India

    Recognising the importance of being locally relevant, Infomedia India has launched hindi edition of their publication Better Photography. The first Hindi edition of 'Better Photography' hit the stands on June 24 and features well-known photographers such as Prabuddha Dasgupta, Rafiq Maqbool and Atul Kasbekar. 'Better Photography' is the first Hindi title in its category and is expected to sell over 35,000 copies in its inaugural issue.
    This is Infomedia’s second Hindi title launch in the last three months, after Hindi edition of ‘Overdrive’ which launched in the first week of April.


    Tuesday, June 27, 2006

    Article: Remembering 'Target' and 'Detective Moochwala'

    Highlights for Children, is dedicated to helping children grow in basic skills and knowledge, in creativeness, in ability to think and reason, in sensitivity to others, in high ideals, and worthy ways of living.
    The magazine, which turns 60 this month, has freshened its look as it competes with video games, television and dozens of other children's magazines, many of which tie into cable networks or spin off of grown-up publications. And this has inspired more than one one-time readers of the magazine to reminisce about the influence of Highlights:
    The lessons conveyed through the cartoon panels - asking parents before adopting a puppy and fulfilling one's promises - are largely unchanged, however, from those that have long modeled good behavior for children
    Also read
    Beloved Magazine turns 60
    Highlights Magazine Freshens Design

    If you are as young as me :) you probably remember Target and its endearing characters 'Detective Moochwala', Ghardab Das and others that we used to wait for every month. It is sad that somewhere in 1991 Target folded up and I don't think I enjoyed any other kids magazine as much after that...
    Perhaps kids were not a very enticing target group to advertisers back then...


    Saturday, June 24, 2006

    Special Interest: 'Shattered' targets Professional Women

    A magazine for professional women set on breaking the proverbial "glass ceiling" of gender discrimination in the upper echelons of the executive world, titled Shattered was launched in mid-June by Shattered Magazine LLC, a privately owned publishing firm based in New York.
    Shattered will be the first business/lifestyle magazine launched with global distribution--leveraging an international network of female professionals at banks, professional associations, and academic institutions. Editorial content will cover a range of industries, including banking and finance, science, technology, law, industry, and media.


    Friday, June 23, 2006

    Editorial: The Politics of Cover Pictures

    US edition of Time, issue dated June 26 2006 , runs this topic on the cover: "INDIA INC.- Why the World's Biggest Democracy is the Next Great Economic Superpower- and What it Means for America." The cover image is a photo illustration of classical Indian dancer wearing a telephone operator headset.

    Interestingly, the cover focus of June 18 2006 issue of Time (Asia/ India Edition) is also 'India'. But this time the cover models look radically different.

    Is this a case of how they like to see us in the West versus how we view ourselves?

    On a different note:
    Read an interesting web exlusive about how a relatively unknown face became the cover model of Time in the article "The Face of India"


    Thursday, June 22, 2006

    Newspapers: Times to Sell Ads on Front of Business Section, shrink width

    The New York Times plans to sell advertisements on the front of its Business Day section starting in two weeks. The ads are expected to sell at a premium rate because of the prominent showcase the front of the section affords. They will appear in a strip along the bottom of the page.

    The change comes as The Times, along with other newspapers, faces an increasingly difficult economic environment. The Times already runs ads on the front of The Metro Section on Sundays, and some newspapers, including USA Today, are now selling advertising space on their front pages — a move The Wall Street Journal, for one, has said it is considering.

    Giving such valuable space to advertisers has been controversial within the newspaper industry. But as more newspapers put ads on their section fronts, and most newspaper Web sites run ads on their virtual front pages, the practice may be losing some of its stigma.

    Read the full article describing other cost cutting methods suggested in Times to Sell Ads on Front of Business Section (FREE registeration required at

    Monday, June 19, 2006

    Awards: 2006 Chicago Tribune Favourite 50

    The staff at Chicago Tribune announce their fourth Annual 'Favourite 50 Magazines' list.

    1) THE ECONOMIST - The best English-language newsweekly.
    2) DWELL - An old-fashioned sense of fun and practicality.
    3) WIRED - Meaty reporting.
    4) THE NEW YORKER - Wonderful writing and reporting.
    5) ESPN THE MAGAZINE - About the people playing the games.
    6) ESQUIRE - Just the right mix of fashion, music, how-to and humor.
    7) CONSUMER REPORTS - The straight scoops on our consumer culture.
    8) BLENDER - The cool kid of rock magazines.
    9) GOURMET - Love it for the worldview it applies to food.
    10) THE ATLANTIC - Keeps us smart and in the know.
    11) MEN'S VOGUE - Knows no, ho..m.o or metr.o.s..ex..ual boundaries.
    12) COOK'S ILLUSTRATED - Consumer Reports for our stomachs.
    13) COTTAGE LIVING - A simple, comfortable, stylish way of life.
    14) MOTHER JONES - Go[es] where other magazines dare not tread.
    15) MEN'S HEALTH - Well-written in-depth essays.

    Read complete article and more detailed reviews of their favourite 50 magazines, or vote for your magazine preference.


    Friday, June 16, 2006

    Design: BusinessWeek's Unpaid Competition to Design IN

    My friend Aparna Ranjan sent me this mail about the controversy surrounding the debut of INside Innovation, a new magazine from BusinessWeek that promises "a deep, deep dive into the innovation/design/creativity space."

    She quotes:
    "For probably the first time ever a leading publication has designed it's magazine through an honorary pitch – a competition between mag-design giants (so to speak). The idea being maybe, to get fresh ideas and boost innovation, among others.
    (Read views of Nussbaum, an assistant managing editor, who spearheaded BusinessWeek's coverage of design and innovation for years, in this article: Backstory: How We Designed The New INside Innovation Magazine.)
    Many in the design community see this as an outrage--a leading publication getting a magazine designed for free and calling it innovation. It is quite a heated debate to follow.
    One reaction: "so let me get this straight: BusinessWeek wants to launch a magazine to the mass business market about the value of design and innovation, and how businesses can better utilize designers services, and then asks four of the top design firms in the country to work for free. does anyone else see the cruel irony in this?"
    A detailed (also well written) contrary view can be read on Design Observer

    INside Innovation is expected to be a quarterly at first, stitched inside BusinessWeek with issue #1 hitting the stands on June 9, with two more issues for '06.


    Monday, June 12, 2006

    Special Interest: Magazine for 'High Stakes' Demographic

    ValetNoir, the world's first casino exchange offering personalized hosting services, has announced the launch of a closed- circulation magazine, RFB (Room, Food & Beverage) to help guide its members in their lifestyle decisions.

    ValetNoir which partners with 26 casino resort destinations and four cruise lines has a database of over 410,000 'individual members that embrace the casino experience'. RFB will initially reach 60,000 of ValetNoir's top tier elite members.

    "RFB will serve as an insider's guide to gaming, resort, nightlife and fine dining," said George Nassef, President and Founder of ValetNoir. "The publication will be mailed directly to our clients, who have significant disposable income."

    ValetNoir caters to a broad membership from single young adults to affluent empty nesters. Casino players typically have high incomes. Statistically, casino players enjoy travel, nightlife, fine dining, professional services, golf, cigar smoking, shopping and sports more than the general population.

    "For advertisers targeting people with high disposable income and status, RFB is the perfect vehicle," said Nassef.


    Thursday, June 08, 2006

    Media Ads: Business Media. Devoured by the Influential

    The American Business Media ad campaign, “Devoured by the Influential,” debuts this June and focuses on the importance that readers, viewers, and attendees place on business-to-business media to inform and help the purchase/decision-making process.

    Because business-to-business media is so important to the global economy, the users are more engaged and involved with it than general business media (e.g. general business magazines, TV and radio). This campaign speaks to that importance of the Forrester Study on the Digital Marketing Shift, and the soon-to-be released Harris study on end-user trends.

    “Everybody’s seeking engagement and involvement these days,” says Mark DiMassimo, CEO & creative director of DiMassimo, the agency that created the campaign. “Business media takes that to the limit. It’s not read, it’s devoured!" This campaign dramatizes that fact and features artwork illustrating a human digestive system with the digestive tract leading to the brain instead of the stomach. (I have yet to get a picture, but it seems to be quite a change from the earlier ABM advertising, shown with this posting).

    The campaign comprises of print, digital and face-to-face components reflecting the multi-platform reality of today’s business media. The ads debut in print publications including Advertising Age, the AdWeek Group, B-to-B magazine, Chief Executive, and The Wall Street Journal, and will be featured on a multitude of sites, including and


    Wednesday, June 07, 2006

    Circulation: Growing Internationally

    Indian magazine market is very vibrant right now due to launch of a slew of international magazines. Here are the trade secrets of some international publishers and what makes them click in different countries.

    Playboy Magazine: Subsidiaries Produce Local Content

    While Playboy has been a worldwide icon, executive VP and general manager, Playboy International, Robert O’Donnell, says that unique content is what makes it an international force.
    “We stress local rather than universal content,” O’Donnell says. “You have to be relevant to the market. We average between 75 and 90 percent local content between the different markets.”

    IDG:Worldwide Markets Require Products

    “Our goal has always been to serve our customers worldwide,” says David Hill, president and CEO, IDG International Publishing Services. “On the readership side, the need for information on information technology is present in every country.”
    “The only question becomes, ‘Are there enough readers in any given country to support a publication?’," says Hill, adding, “The web has made it possible to reach even smaller audiences that could not be economically reached in print.”
    On the advertising side, Hill says, since the IT industry is global, and many of IDG’s customers are global players, the company wants to have a publication or vehicle anywhere in the world they may want to market their products.

    Cosmopolitan: The Power of the International Newsstand

    Hearst Magazines International president and CEO George Green, says “In the U.S. more than 90 percent of your circulation is subscriptions. Outside the U.S., more than 90 percent is newsstand.”
    As a result of the greater percentage of newsstand sales outside the U.S., Green says that the money a publisher receives by publishing internationally is “10-15 percentage points higher” than domestic publishing. Another cost-saving effect of the strong international newsstand is the fact that publishers can cut out subscriber acquisition expenses.
    Aside from the power of the newsstand, Green attributes the success of these international editions to the fact that each edition is given a local spin. The editions are published in their local languages, and Green says there are not any Americans working at any of the international editions.
    “[The editions] interpret the brand,” he says. “They don’t copy the U.S. edition. The only pickup is the cover frequently, and maybe some other small things.

    Read complete article here


    Monday, June 05, 2006

    Trends: Exclusive premiums drive magazine sales

    According to Circulation Management’s April 2006 issue Future US, a leading publisher of cutting-edge games, action sports, computing musician, and men’s and women’s lifestyle magazines, saw a 12.5% gain in retail sales over the last year.

    Future belives that inclusion of exclusive premiums (namely DVDs and CD-ROMs) with the newsstand copies ensured that consumers spend significantly more money on Future titles than any other magazines on the newsstand.

    Hoping to drive sales using premiums, the "summer preview" issue of TV Guide has announced a FREE DVD that gives sneak peeks, cast interviews, and "behind-the-scenes" content from both new and established series, including TV Guide's picks for the best comedies, family shows, and reality TV.

    The DVD will be packaged in 700,000 issues to be sold in top markets including New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Francisco, Portland, and Boston. Shows to be previewed include HBO's "Entourage," Showtime's "Brotherhood," and TNT's "The Closer."


    Friday, June 02, 2006

    Media Ads: Austin American Statesman

    The Austin American-Statesman new print and TV campaign asks readers how often they "Get it!".

    One ad shows people reminiscing about the first time they got it: in college, from a best friend's mom, a college professor, online or not until a couple got married. Another ad shows the different ways to get it: "from my assistant Ricky... on my desk," "after a long hard day with the kids," "from my dog."

    The campaign was created in-house and is available for view here.