Hitting newsstands this week is the first of an annual endeavor from ESPN The Magazine: a fashion centric issue called the Style Report. The special issue marks a major move toward including more fashion coverage than ever before.

While this might be a risky move for a sports publication, Steven Binder, Vice President, Publishing Director for ESPN The Magazine, told FishbowlNY that he was completely confident.

When we suggested that this seemed like an attempt to lure more female readers, he countered that 20 percent of ESPN The Magazine’s subscription base is women, so that wasn’t the case. The shift, said Binder, was actually in response to reader – both male and female – feedback.

“This is something our readers want to know about. They want to see what athletes are wearing on and off the field. We’re not looking to become a fashion magazine at all, but this is the beginning of an increase in our coverage.”

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