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Posts Tagged ‘John Cassidy’

The Luxury Approach to Newspapers Appears to be Working

WSJSubscriptionPromoIn a December 2012 essay, New Yorker staff writer John Cassidy noted how both the Wall Street Journal and New York Times seemed headed in an elitist digital subscriber direction. This afternoon, he’s back on the same general topic and guess what? It amounts to a “Bit of Good News About Journalism.”

Cassidy reminds that full annual digital subscriptions to these newspapers (once initial promotional rates end) are pricey: $348 for the Wall Street Journal, $455 for the New York Times and $467 for the Financial Times. But for dailies lucky enough to have the right median-income reader and workplace subscriptions base, it seems to be working:

At the Financial Times, the bulk of the company’s revenues now come from digital subscriptions, and the newspaper has been profitable for quite a while. [Spokesperson Rachel] Taub also told me that profits grew in the first half of 2014, driven by a rise in digital revenues. A spokesperson for the Journal wouldn’t comment on its finances, but earlier this month, the newspaper’s corporate sibling, Times Newspapers of the United Kingdom, which publishes the Times and the Sunday Times, recorded its first operating profit in thirteen years. That’s particularly notable because Times Newspapers was one of the first UK publishers to ditch the free-content model. Five years ago, it was losing more than a hundred million dollars a year.

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Fortune Adds Two

Fortune magazine has hired two new columnists: Sheila Bair, most recently a chairperson with the FDIC, and John Cassidy, a contributor to the New Yorker. Bair will cover the relationship between Wall Street and politics; her first column is online today. Cassidy will report on general business, and his debut column will appear in the next issue of Fortune.

Andy Serwer, Managing Editor of Fortune, said that Bair and Cassidy would continue the tradition of having talented columnists at the magazine.

“Columnists are the heart and soul of any journalistic enterprise,” said Serwer. ”The unfettered voices of a newspaper or magazine, they opine, snarl, and otherwise shout from the treetops. The best columnists have a mastery of subject, an ironclad take, and complete command of the written word.”

Conde Nast Portfolio’s Breakfast Panel

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This morning, Conde Nast Portfolio magazine hosted a swank Panel/Breakfast at the 21 Club. The topic: The Market’s Future: What’s Next for the Economy. Speakers: John Cassidy, Contributing Editor, Matt Cooper, Washington Editor, Jesse Eisinger, Senior Writer. Editor in Chief, Joanne Lipman moderated.

Attendees included: Mort Zuckerman, Peggy Siegal, Rick Lazio, Felicia Taylor, Richard Edelman, Harold Burstein, Bob Scully, Jonathan Dahl, Jonathan Wald . Noticeably absent Jon Fine, of Business Week (wink: my husband).

I twittered the event. For my transcript, click continue. Follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/laureltouby…

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