Two weeks ago, news leaked that Playboy Enterprises was in talks to sell their holdings to London Fog owner Iconix Brand Group Inc. Hugh Hefner‘s publishing empire’s stock has fallen drastically in the last five years, and the recent economic downturn dealt a major blow to the magazine industry, and drew speculation that Playboy was no longer a sustainable enterprise. (In September alone, Playboy‘s ad pages fell 35 percent.) Turns out, the rumors were only half right.
Posts Tagged ‘ Dylan Stableford’
The Afar team celebrates the mag launch at 632 Hudson last night in NYC. From left: Co-founder Joseph Diaz, editor-in-chief Susan West, publisher John Sheehy, founder and CEO Greg Sullivan, and executive director of travel Claude Girard. Photo by Shawn Ehlers Photography.
Filling an opulent townhouse with Moroccan fare, Basque wine and didgeridoo and capoeira performances, niche travel mag Afar introduced itself and its mission to deliver international editorial content for the “experiential traveler” at last night’s launch party in the Meatpacking District. In an era of cancelled conferences and Christmas parties, folded magazines and company-wide layoffs, the party certainly was transporting.
We spotted some familiar faces in the crowd, including Samir Husni (a.k.a. Mr. Magazine), EntertainmentWeekly.com’s Cyndi Stivers, and TheWrap.com’s Dylan Stableford. We caught up with Afar‘s publisher, John Sheehy, a former Time Inc. publishing director who consulted on Dwell‘s launch, to hear first-hand why anyone would launch a print publication in this economy. Apparently, the industry’s current financial turmoil is of little concern to Sheehy: “The downturn is actually helping [Afar], because people are more selective about travel.” Ad pages account for 25 percent of Afar‘s 100-page launch issue, and Sheehy is bullish about the future. The bimonthly magazine hits newsstands August 18, and a Web site and social network component to the print pub is set to debut in early 2010.
Afar co-founders Greg Sullivan (CEO) and Joe Diaz said they came up with the concept for Afar after a five-week stay in India with no set agenda. Sullivan said they realized that this “beneath the culture” travel had no media representation, and they believe Afar can fill that niche need in the crowded travel mag market. Said Sullivan, Afar “should be a media brand that inspires this kind of [experiential] travel,” he said.
But can another travel mag really endure the journey to success in these hard publishing times? Sullivan (who, by the way, sank $10 million of his own money into this project) seems to have no doubts, saying, “It sure seems like we’re touching a chord here… We really think this could be a big thing.”
Check out photos from the event (didgeridoos included) after the jump…
Aurthur will report to the Daily Beast’s West Coast Bureau Chief Gabe Doppelt, who Brown poached from W back in June. Brown also recently lured away our own editorial director Rebecca Fox. She’s joining the online publication later this month as director of editorial development and operations. Although Fox will be based in New York, she’s just one example of Brown’s recent quest to stock her staff — on the West Coast and here in New York — with talented journalists and editors with impressive resumes.
FishbowlLA: The Daily Beast Claims Another One
Smith told Gawker the Page Six gig is her “dream job.”
Good luck, Emily. Drop us a line sometime.
The Wrap: Page Six Names New No. 2
Here’s some proof that there is work out there for talented journos: just a few weeks after being let go from Folio former FishbowlNY-er Dylan Stableford has started covering New York media for TheWrap.com.
Looking forward for more to come.
Stableford left FBNY in August 2007 to return to Connecticut-based Folio where he had previously served as senior editor. We have reached out to Stableford, but haven’t heard from him yet. However, a source at Red 7 Media, which publishes Folio and the companion Web site, told FBNY that Stableford was laid off
yesterday two weeks ago along with three other people from various departments at the company. Folio is published monthly and its site reports more urgent, breaking news, to which Stableford contributed very frequently. With his well-sourced reporting and insight gone from the site, what will be left to read?
News of Stableford’s job loss was followed by a report that Page Six gossip maven Paula Froelich has resigned from her post as Richard Johnson‘s right hand woman. Froelich is presumably ditching her day job to work on bigger projects, like books. She is now a bonafide author, after her first novel, “Mercury in Retrograde,” debuted last month and quickly reached the New York Times bestseller list. And, she is rumored to have landed a deal with MTV to develop a show based on her upcoming young adult novel “Grits.”
We want to wish best of luck to these two talented, hard-working journalists. We’re sure they will both move on to bigger and better things.
The suit, filed by 87 individuals, accused Entrepreneur of gross negligence for including Agape World on its Hot 100 list in its May 2008 issue. According to the complaint, the plaintiffs invested money in Agape after seeing the company on Entrepreneur‘s list. Agape’s CEO, Nicholas Cosmo, was later arrested and the company was revealed to be a Ponzi scheme. The plaintiffs are seeking $178 million from Entrepreneur‘s publisher, Entrepreneur Media.
In its motion seeking dismissal of the suit, Entrepreneur pointed out that its Hot 100 list is not supposed to be used as a basis for investment strategy.
“The ‘Hot 100 at a Glance’ was offered as informative material to a general audience of readers and neither draws any conclusions nor makes any recommendations to its readers, as to the financial suitability of an investment in any of the listed companies,” the motion explained.
It’s sort of fitting that my last FBNY post should be about The Atlantic dinner/conversation I attended earlier this evening, which featured Michael Hirschorn and Andrew Sullivan, since this post was actually my first foray into this whole blogging thing (and remains my top Google result).
The talk — the dinner part included chili, cornbread, and brownies — was billed in the invite as “A Conversation on the Future of Media” and the crowd that packed Justin Smith‘s downtown apartment included a whole lot of very recognizable New York Media names who will no doubt be heavily involved in that very Future. Here’s a non-exhaustive list: Bonnie Fuller, Harry Smith, Richard Perez-Pena, Nick Denton, Tad Friend, Duff McDonald, Gabriel Snyder, Jeff Bercovici, Matt Haber, Danny Shea, Brian Stelter, Rachel Sklar, Jon Fine, Dylan Stableford, Laurel Touby, James Bennett…and also, strangely(?), (the very tall) Sigourney Weaver.
Alas, neither Sullivan nor Hirschorn appeared to have any definite ideas about what ‘Media’ might look in the future other than that it would probably be very different from what we currently have, but also that the New York Times is in a lot of trouble. For those of you keeping score Andrew Sullivan still reads the dead tree edition of the Times every morning and does not Twitter. @LaurelTouby, @BrianStelter, and @RachelSklar, however, all have nice tweets from the party. Now(!), before I sign off for good here’s a couple of other interesting things I read today:
- Choire speculating on, among other things, the equality of words;
- Chris Lehmann talking about his “crash course in the staggering unselfawareness of Manhattan class privilege;”
- Gay Talese, who is described solely in this article as “an author who writes on the sex trade.” Ahem;
- Garry Trudeau on journos “Smitten With The Idea Of A Personal Broadcasting System;”
- Twitter’s greatest hits… and misses;
- This, for reasons which will become clear at some point tomorrow;
- And this, because it’s had me laughing all day. The video in the top corner of this post, by the way, is purely for the enjoyment of my managing editor Rebecca Fox and for the edification of my Menu cohort Steve Krakauer.
Folio:‘s Dylan Stableford is looking on the bright side of media! He’s put together a list of the ten most inspiring things to happen in media in 2008. Number One: Seasoned Print Editors Go it Alone — Online
From ex-PC World editor Harry McCracken to Tina Brown‘s inner-Beast to a pair of ex-ElleGirl editors with Daily Candy-like aspirations, 2008 could was the year that old-school print editors collectively said “&%@# it” and forged ahead with their own businesses online.