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Background: The "salmon-colored weekly" was founded in 1987 by Arthur Carter and was edited by Graydon Carter until 1992 when he left to take over Vanity Fair. In 2006, the paper was sold to real-estate scion Jared Kushner, who changed the format to a tabloid style. The paper returned to a broadsheet format under Elizabeth Spiers, who stepped down from the top spot in 2011.
Through the years, the Observer's editorial mission has remained fairly constant: "to provide a highly sophisticated readership a smart, skeptical, insider's view of the city’s power players and their ambitions and foibles," said former editor-in-chief Aaron Gell. The target reader is generally affluent, well-educated and sophisticated. "A few key points of distinction that differentiate a classic Observer story from the work of competitors such as the Times and New York magazine," explained Gell, "is a sharp eye for the absurdities inherent in the New York scene, a greater focus on the characters who define the city and a wry sense of humor."...