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Megan

Promotions at Ebony

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As the magazine world continues to ponder the closing of Portfolio earlier this week, Ebony is handing out a few promotions.

Johnson Publishing
announced today that Terry Glover has been named managing editor of the glossy. Glover most recently served as EbonyJet.com‘s senior online editor and has also completed tours of duty at Savoy, Uptown and Playboy.com.

Promotions also came to new senior editor Adrienne Samuels Gibbs and to new senior writer Margena A. Christian.

The release, after the jump.

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Portfolio Postmortem: Business Mag Missed The Membership Mark

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From the ashes of just-shuttered Portfolio comes yet another smoke signal that the business of magazines is in need of a major tune-up — and fast.

The Deal‘s Yvette Kantrow today compared the now-defunct Portfolio to the currently expanding Bloomberg, pointing out that the latter does a much better job of providing a niche audience with a product its members are willing to pay for. Sound familiar?

It should: mediabistro.com founder Laurel Touby was singing that same tune when she sat down with The Deal’s Mary Kathleen Flynn last week to discuss the maladies of the media industry. In the video interview‘s second installment, Touby suggests that outlets monetize their content by making it an essential product to their specific readerships, which they should treat at member-based communities. “Treat readers as your friends that you want to help,” says Touby.

Seems Portfolio never got that message: “It never delivered on its lofty goal of creating something significantly different than any other business pub out there, even as editor Joanne Lipman gobbled up talent that the rest of media immediately labeled ‘stars,’” wrote Kantrow.

“Though Portfolio vowed to produce serious, yet-accessible long-form business journalism, it seemed to traffic more in luxury and CEO porn,” Kantrow continued. “To make it in business journalism, perhaps you need to serve people who actually like business.”

Megan Stride

Nieman Speaker to Writers: ‘The Business Model Is Broken — You Are Not Broken’

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Despite widespread industry layoffs and the closures plaguing many media outlets, 575 journalists, writers and students gathered in Boston over the weekend for Harvard University’s annual Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism.

Numbers were down — last year the event attracted 850 attendees, meaning this year’s number of attendees was down by a third — but while the conference addressed the uncertain future of the media, speakers strove to stay upbeat. In addition to much discussion of business models, several themes emerged throughout the weekend:

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Magazine Pro to Newbies: Downturn a ‘Petri Dish For Innovation’

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From left: MPA’s Shaunice Hawkins; Newsweek‘s Kevin Delaney; Meredith’s E.J. Moralez-Gomez; Fortune‘s Brad Young; and moderator Elvira Perez of MPA

At Magazine Publishers of America’s “Find Yourself In Magazines” event for those seeking to enter the industry, the mantra from industry panelists was one of encouragement: Magazines, they promised, are not going anywhere. On Friday, nearly 100 job-hungry college students and recent graduates crowded the Time & Life building for the event, designed to deliver guidance from magazine pros in editorial, marketing and sales.

Speakers included Parents executive editor and Ed2010 founder Chandra Turner, who’s been sharing her advice a lot these days. In a keynote speech referencing the doom and gloom of recent mass media layoffs — Turner herself was let go when CosmoGirl! folded last October — she said the industry’s current state was simply the next step in magazines’ ongoing evolution. “I don’t think that this is the end of magazines,” she said. “We’ve had magazine genres die and come back, die and come back. Now, I think [the industry is] changing to be more tailored magazines, more niche magazines.” She supplemented the prognosis with seven upbeat predictions for 2009.

So, what should mag-industry newbies expect?

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