Late last year, Salon began an “experiment” in selling items like martini shakers, shower-rings and creepy baby head candles (pictured) through its website. The Wall Street Journal, meanwhile, has attempted to increase revenue by organizing a wine club in 2008 (along with helpful guides on how to, for example, pronounce the names of some of these gosh-durned fancy wines) and, more recently, creating travel packages inspired by its coverage. Then there’s the New York Times, which has launched its own wine club. Not to be left out, Salon also has a wine club — and a book club — in the works.
Such online stores and clubs have not, typically, proven especially lucrative. One notable exception being Monocle magazine, which was able to pay for a Hong Kong bureau through the sale of tote bags. Plus, who doesn’t know someone who owns a mug purchased from The Onion‘s online store?