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Archives: April 2009

Newspapers, Bloat Behind Portfolio‘s Demise?

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Rumors of problems at Portfolio began long before the Conde Nast business magazine folded Monday. Media watchers have been obsessively analyzing Portfolio’s every move since the title launched in April 2007 and much of the criticism has focused on editor-in-chief Joanne Lipman. Observers say Lipman, who came to Portfolio by way of the Wall Street Journal had a troubled relationship with her staff, spent too much money, and didn’t get the Internet. According to others inside the embattled business book, Portfolio’s demise may have also stemmed from poor planning and organization, a missed opportunity with its critically-lauded Web site, and falling newspaper revenues at Conde Nast parent company Advance Publications.

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Blender Refugee Moves To Maxim As Creative Director

maximcover429.jpgDirk Barnett has been named creative director at Maxim.

Barnett had been in the same role at sister pub Blender until Alpha Media Group shuttered the music magazine in March.

While at Blender, Barnett led a redesign of the pub that has been nominated for a “Redesign of the Year” award by the Society of Publication Designers.

Maxim editor-in-chief Joe Levy, who moved over from the EIC spot at Blender when the plug was pulled last month, said in the release, “I am thrilled and privileged to be able to continue to work with him at Maxim.”

Full release following the jump.

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Last Night’s Mediabistro Cocktail Party

The event- held in the luxurious upstairs rooms of Social Hollywood, formerly known as the Hollywood Athletic Club- drew a large and lively crowd.

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LAT blogger George Ducker and FBLA editor Tina Dupuy

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Laureen Lazarovici, who will be on tonight’s SPJ/LA panel, and freelancer Lori Allen

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Journalist Sharan Street and marketing executive Kim Marshall

Ellies Nominee Kitman Says State of Industry’s More of an “Irish Wake” Than “Funeral”

mmm_2-3.gifToday on the mediabistro.com Morning Media Menu we’re joined by Automobile columnist Jamie Kitman.

Kitman is nominated for an Ellies Award for three columns he wrote for Automobile Magazine. We talk to him about what the nomination means, financial reporting in general the changing magazine industry and more.

Also, from the newsfeed: will the WSJ become #1 in total circulation and the Supreme Court backs FCC regulation of “fleeting expletives.”

“As I counseled my colleagues at the Detroit show in January and New York this month, it’s better to look at it as an Irish Wake than as a funeral,” says Kitman of the state of the industry. “What’s gone is gone, and the rest of us have to go forward. I know that there will always be journalists and publishers and something good will happen.”

You can listen to all the past podcasts at BlogTalkRadio.com/mediabistro and call in at 646-929-0321. One note: we’re live all this week an hour later than usual, at 10amET.

Rodale To Develop Eat This, Not That! TV Series

thisthat429.jpgRodale wants you to watch this, not that: The publishing company announced it will partner with Reveille to develop and produce an unscripted TV series based on Eat This, Not That!, the bestselling book series from Men’s Health editor-in-chief David Zinczenko and food and nutrition editor Matt Goulding.

The brand began as a column in the magazine and since has expanded to include the book series, as well as a Web site and blog.

Rodale and Reveille also teamed up for six seasons of The Biggest Loser, the weight-loss TV series with ties to Rodale pub Prevention.

The release, after the jump.

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Give Women The Right To Vote And The Whole Country Goes Down The Toilet

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Billionaire Peter Thiel, hedge fund-manager, early Facebook investor, and co-founder and former CEO of Paypal, has written a little essay about his libertarian views for the libertarian blog Cato Unbound. We should note that Cato Unbound doesn’t identify itself as a blog, but a “state-of-the-art virtual trading floor in the intellectual marketplace, specializing in the exchange of big ideas.” Gosh.

But we digress. Enjoy an excerpt of Thiel’s political insights:

The 1920s were the last decade in American history during which one could be genuinely optimistic about politics. Since 1920, the vast increase in welfare beneficiaries and the extension of the franchise to women – two constituencies that are notoriously tough for libertarians – have rendered the notion of “capitalist democracy” into an oxymoron.

Read the whole essay here. Or, y’know, don’t.

ENG 371WR: Writing for Nonreaders in the Postprint Era

McSweeny’s blog has a brilliant course description for a fictional internet-age writing class. An excerpt:


Prerequisites

Students must have completed at least two of the following.

ENG: 232WR – Advanced Tweeting: The Elements of Droll
LIT: 223 – Early-21st-Century Literature: 140 Characters or Less
ENG: 102 – Staring Blankly at Handheld Devices While Others Are Talking
ENG: 301 – Advanced Blog and Book Skimming
ENG: 231WR – Facebook Wall Alliteration and Assonance
LIT: 202 – The Literary Merits of Lolcats
LIT: 209 – Internet-Age Surrealistic Narcissism and Self-Absorption

Required Reading Materials

Literary works, including the online table of contents of the Huffington Post’s Complete Guide to Blogging, will serve as models to be skimmed for thorough analysis. Also, Perez Hilton’s Twitter feed.

The complete course description and syllabus can be read here

Exclusive: Adaora Udoji Leaving The Takeaway

Adaora_Udoji.jpgAdaora Udoji is departing the WNYC and WPRI morning news show The Takeaway to spend more time with her husband and newly adopted baby girl.

“I am extraordinarily proud of what The Takeaway has accomplished and am honored to have worked with such a talented group of people,” Udoji said in a statement announcing the news. “I have made the right decision for my family at this time. However, journalism will always be my passion and I look forward to returning to my career at some point in the future.”

Full release after the jump.

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FBLA’s Top 5 Stories Yesterday

Eat This, Not That Coming Soon to Teevee

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Reveille announced today it has partnered with Rodale Inc. to develop and produce an unscripted television program based on Eat This, Not That!, the bestselling book series created by Men’s Health Editor-in-Chief David Zinczenko and Food and Nutrition Editor Matt Goulding.

Eat This, Not That! was inspired by the popular Men’s Health magazine column and presents a no-diet weight-loss solution that allows consumers to eat their favorite foods and still lose weight. The unscripted show will expand on the easy-to-use format of the book, which provides thousands of simple food swaps that will save unwanted calories at any restaurant, drive-thru, supermarket or kitchen.

The rest of the press release is after the break.

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