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Circulation: 100,000; website has 300,000 monthly unique visitors
Special issues: Published infrequently
Background: Starting a magazine is hard. Keeping a magazine afloat is harder. Making a ballsy, in-your-face feminist magazine that, for decades, has helped shape the women's movement is hardest. But Ms. has never been about doing what's easy. Launched in 1971 as a one-page insert in New York magazine to underscore the importance of women's rights, Ms. has become the feminism bible, the definitive word on women's empowerment.
While the magazine zeroes in on issues affecting women, it is not what you'd call a women's magazine. You won't find advice on how to snag a man or what hors d'oeuvres to serve at your dinner party. And the pub's kaleidoscopic demographic includes women and men, high-school age and older, and crosses racial and socioeconomic lines.
Ms. aims to be "nationally and internationally recognized as the media expert on issues relating to women's status, women's rights and women's points of view," says research editor Stephanie Hallett. "We cover a broad range of issues and offer informed, accessible yet rigorously researched stories."
The magazine's hard-hitting stories on politics and policy, women's legal status, and cultural trends are what set it apart from pubs such as Bitch, Mother Jones, Bust and The Nation and keep it at the forefront of the women's movement. Its lauded "No Comment" section, which challenges offensive advertising -- causing some advertisers to rethink or remove their ads -- has helped make Ms. an icon. Now, that's girl power.