Welcome back to another edition of FishbowlNY’s weekly Cover Battle. This round we have Time taking on The Hollywood Reporter.
Time’s latest features a trippy illustration of Hillary Clinton. If the creative director and art team who created this cover wasn’t on acid when they came up with this, we’d hate to see them when they are.
THR’s newest, meanwhile, has Stephen Colbert considering his options.
So readers, which cover is better? You can vote, comment, or do both.
Lauren Ramsby, the New York Post’s managing editor since 2009, is leaving the paper.
According to a memo from editor in chief Stephen Lynch that was obtained by Politico, Ramsby is moving on to pursue other opportunities. Her last day will be August 4.
Ramsby has been with the Post since 2002. She served as Sunday editor for six years before being promoted to managing editor.
Prior to joining the Post, Ramsby worked for The New York Observer for more than a decade.
Glamour has cut staff as it further integrates with Self.
Among the handful of those let go was executive director of editorial operations John Dioso. According to WWD, others cut from Glamour included a senior fashion news editor, copy editors and photographers.
A memo from Glamour editor in chief Cindi Leive and chief revenue officer Connie Anne Phillips indicated that the layoffs were part of a restructuring.
The changes also mean more Glamour-Self intergration. The combo began forming last year when Glamour absorbed Self’s ad sales team.
The new Glamour-Self structure has the magazines sharing operations and social media teams. The operations staffers will serve under Glamour managing editor LaToya Valmont and Self managing editor Erin Hobday. The social media staff will serve under the newly-appointed associate social media director Kenny Thapoung.
Everyone wants to know why/how our nation ended up with someone like Donald Trump as a presidential candidate. That’s at least one reason why The Atlantic’s July/August issue—featuring a cover story explaining “How American Politics Went Insane” by Jonathan Rauch—is getting a second printing.
The issue is on pace to be The Atlantic’s best-selling edition since 2008. It has already sold twice as many copies as The Atlantic’s July/August issue from last year. To make up for the overwhelming demand, the magazine has ordered 25,000 additional copies.
“At a time of troubling newsstand performance for many magazines, it was kind of thrilling to order up a second printing for this issue,” said Atlantic president Bob Cohn, in a statement. “Even as our website attracts millions and millions of readers, we are especially gratified by the overwhelming response to the print magazine — particularly with its renewed emphasis on politics in this fascinating year.”
The New York News Publishers Association (NYNPA), like many local press clubs around the country, tallies up a large number of categories for its annual awards. But within those parameters, the Gannett-owned Poughkeepsie Journal continues to set the bar high.
At this year’s awards banquet, held in Albany July 20, the paper won 17 prizes. That’s the most ever for the paper, the most for any paper in the history of the NYNPA banquet and the ninth straight year the publication has led in their circulation category. From the paper’s item:
“I am so proud of the high-quality and outstanding journalism that is being produced from our award-winning Poughkeepsie Journal Media newsroom team,” president and publisher Jim Fogler said. “To win the most awards across all of the competition categories truly showcases we are truly making a positive difference with the stories we tell in the communities we serve.”
Another paper that did well at the 2015-year awards is the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. Their eight prizes include one for investigative reporting, thanks to Justin Murphy’s examination of problems with the way the Rochester City School District educates Latino students with disabilities.
At Wednesday night’s event, the John Peter Zenger Award – given to an individual “who demonstrates an unyielding dedication to freedom of the press in the stae of New York” – was presented to Ira Fusfeld, who served as publisher of the Daily Freeman in Kingston, N.Y., from 1987 to 2012.
Image via: Twitter
When it rains, it pours. According to The Guardian, the legal team for Gretchen Carlson—who has sued Fox News CEO Roger Ailes for sexual harassment—has claimed that more than 20 women have come forward with similar accusations.
The alleged incidents span almost the entirety of Ailes’ career. The earliest accusations came from when he served as an executive producer for The Mike Douglas Show in the 1960s. A majority of the women said they were harassed firsthand; a handful reached out to Carlson’s lawyers as witnesses.
This new information coincides with a New York Times report that an 21st Century Fox investigation into Ailes spelled the end for him.
As more details come out, the media world awaits the inevitable — the end of Ailes’ reign.
The Associated Press is losing a good one. Kathleen Carroll, the AP’s executive editor for the past 14 years, has announced that she’s resigning at the end of the year.
Carroll previously served as a writer and editor in four AP bureaus. She was promoted to executive editor in 2002.
In a statement, Carroll said she was leaving to spend more time with family and to “reclaim some life that hasn’t been within easy reach during these 14 years.”
AP president and CEO Gary Pruitt heaped praise upon Carroll.
“If AP were a sports team, we would be retiring Kathleen’s number,” he said. “I respect Kathleen’s decision to move on from AP and appreciate her years of leadership and service. Her combined extraordinary editorial skill, committed engagement with staff, toughness and compassion have made AP news what it is today.”
A couple Revolving Door items for you this morning, involving moves at CNNMoney and Bloomberg. Details are below.Ahiza Garcia, most recently a general assignment reporter for CNNMoney.com, has shifted to the sports business beat. Garcia previously worked for Talking Points Memo. Patricia Laya, most recently a reporter for Bloomberg based in Mexico City, is moving to its Washington bureau to serve as an economics reporter. Laya joined Bloomberg in 2012.
I’ve been chronicling the scene at Michael’s for 10 years now and today ranks among the most epic Wednesday ‘Lunches’ ever. None other than Julian Niccolini (wearing sparking silver Thom Browne wingtips) sauntered through the dining room. People thought they were seeing things as the displaced restaurateur made his way to the Garden Room to join director Joel Schumacher, Pete Peterson, Jay Peterson, executive producer of the instantly addictive Lip Sync Battle and a few other fellows at their corner table. (Pete likes a quiet spot which are few and far between on Wednesdays. Hence, the table in the back.)
I had to dash back to Julian’s table to ask the former Four Seasons co-owner what it felt to be a power luncher rather than preside over a room full of them.”The power lunch is right here!” he declared. “There’s nothing but four walls over there.” Obviously still in a reflective mood about the storied restaurant’s closing just last week, he told me without me having to ask: “The thing that keeps a place like this going for 25 years is the incredible people who come here. I have the utmost respect for Michael [McCarty, the owner of Michael’s].” As if you ever had any doubt, that does it. To all the naysayers that have long predicted the demise of the power lunch: it is alive and thriving at Michael’s.
I also got a chance to ask Joel, who directed one of my favorite films of all time (St. Elmo’s Fire!) and recently directed episodes of House of Cards, what he thought of Garry Marshall‘s passing. “Gary was born a mensch and stayed a mensch. He never changed and was incredibly loyal. He picked Julia Roberts for Pretty Woman when she was an unknown. I’m sure he had to fight for her. There are a lot of people very grateful to him.”
OK, now on to the main event. I was joined today by HGTV Magazine’s editor in chief Sara Peterson and publisher Dan Fuchs. All through our lunch I kept thinking about that whole ‘work spouse’ thing. “Hearst launches magazines very smartly. We’re encouraged to work together,” said Dan, who has logged 13 years at the company. “Ideas come from both sides [of the magazine].” This very enthusiastic duo have been at the top of the masthead since the launch of the title five years ago. Both remember every detail of the events leading up to their professional union. Sara was toiling as director of special projects and Dan was the associate publisher of O, the Oprah Magazine. HGTV Magazine was “on the radar of a while,” explained Dan, who said his longtime mentor Michael Clinton advised him to “be patient.”
In the months leading up to the “official” announcement in March 2012, Sara and Dan met at a coffee shop on the Upper East Side near both their apartments for periodic chats. After the launch, Sara toiled in the tower while Dan and his staff were dispatched to the Sheffield next door. Just six months ago, the advertising team moved into Hearst Tower and now it’s one big happy family. “We can go down to each other’s offices and ask, ‘What do you think of this? Should we do that?'” said Dan.
The magazine, a joint venture between Hearst Magazines and Scripps Networks Interactive, was a hit from the start. “We went out with a rate base of 450,000 and we crushed it,” said Dan. The actual number came in at nearly double their projections.
HGTV Magazine’s June issue was their biggest ever and coincided with the announcement that it will raise its rate base to 1.3 million from 1.25 effective with the January/February 2017 issue. The title is among the top 10 bestsellers at the newsstand and a whole host of advertisers across multiple categories are flocking to its pages.
“Clearly, there was a need for something like this,” said Dan. “We’re a home magazine that feels like a lifestyle magazine. We’re in between Martha Stewart, Oprah and Real Simple at 2 million [circulation] and the traditional shelter books between 40o,ooo and 800,000. We’re at 1.3 million.” He explained that HGTV Magazine’s HHI of $75,000 has enticed advertisers like Mercedes-Benz and beauty companies including L’Oreal, Maybelline and Arden into the book. “We just broke Aveeno. We’re very excited about the beauty category.”
As you might expect, HGTV Magazine is filled with content featuring the network’s popular personalities. “Sometimes they’re contributors, sometime we do a feature like ‘A Day in the Life of’ or a decorating story. Readers love the back page round-up where they share tips and recommendations,” said Sara. “Readers like it when they feel like the stars are shopping just for them.” The magazine team meets with the network’s producers periodically to “trade information” about show launches and specials so as to best showcase the talent that the readers love.
I had to ask what my favorite designing duo, Hilary Farr and David Visentin of Love It or List It were like off-screen. “It’s always fun when they come by,” said David before Sara chimed in: “They have the same great banter they have on the show. David does those same asides. They bicker as if they’re a married couple.” (See, it’s that work spouse thing again.) Sara told me The Property Brothers Jonathan and Drew Scott — are “the hardest working people” she knows. Fan favorites Chip and Joanna Gaines of Fixer Upper are “always great” and are featured in the July/August issue in a special section offering readers ‘Secrets to Fixer Upper Style.’
But Sara was quick to point out that the magazine also uses designers that aren’t affiliated with the network. “We use a range of experts from all over the country.” Want to know how the editors pick houses to makeover? I did. “The editors are very plugged into the designers and are always scouting homes, which is so easy now because you can do it from your desk,” said Sara. “Really, it’s old-fashioned networking.” One thing I noticed about the magazine’s bright, cheerful pages is that unlike more highfalutin shelter books, there are actual people populating the featured houses and rooms. “We want to show people living their real lives. We have a rule that no one can be anonymous.”
Dan flipped through the latest issue to show me the ‘custom content’ created for Stearns & Foster as an illustrative example of how the magazine and the show work together to build the business. The advertiser’s product, which also runs on the network, is featured in a fold-out section along with a promo for Brother vs. Brother and a photo and pull-quote from one of the show’s stars, Jonathan Scott.
“We’re always looking for ways to do something different,” added Sara who reached for the second annual Paint Issue where the door on the cover opened to a greeting from advertiser Behr Paint inviting the reader to ‘Come on in!’ “Isn’t that fun?”
No doubt there are big doings afoot to mark HGTV Magazine’s fifth ‘birthday’ (“We like that so much better than anniversary,” said Sara.) The upcoming October ‘Birthday’ Issue will feature a special section filled with a slew of the editors’ “Favorite Fives,” she explained, “We’re going to do things like ‘Our Five Favorite Lamps That Don’t Look Expensive.'”
Having interviewed so many EIC-publisher duos at Hearst over the past few years, I am always struck by everyone’s unbridled enthusiasm for their titles. On a sliding scale, I’d put Sara and Dan at the top of that list. I asked Dan, who also worked at Condé Nast, what was in the secret sauce. “We are as print proud a company as you can get,” he told me as we sipped our cappuccinos. “It’s the best career decision I ever made.”
Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:
1. Desiree Gruber hosting a table full of gals including Fortune’s Pattie Sellers. Not sure what was on the menu but everyone left with a nice Giorgio Armani gift bag.
2. Comedian David Steinberg
3. Andrew Stein
4. Leonard Lauder and a very tan Marigay McKee, whose 15 month tenure as Saks’ president and subsequent exit kept fellow fashionistas talking for quite a while. Wonder what these to were chatting about? I just wanted to ask her about her fabulous shoes, but never made it over to her table.
5. Peter Brown
6. Penske Media’s Gerry Byrne with his son Gavin Byrne and some folks we didn’t get the chance to meet.
8. New York Social Diary’s David Patrick Columbia with author Linda Fairstein whose new book, Killer Look, is due out next Tuesday.
9. Christine Schott Ledes and George Ledes
11. Vanity Fair scribe Rich Cohen, whose cover story on Margot Robbie for the mag’s latest issue got the Twittersphere all riled up and Tom Freston
12. Barry Frey and Quividi’s CEO Ke-Quang Nguyen-Phuc and east coast regional manager Olivia Bombart
14. Spinmeister Stu Zakim who told me he’s working on Ken Burns’ latest Academy Award campaign for his documentary Defying The Nazis: The Sharps War (Seems a little early, but what do I know?) His other client, Amazon Studio’s The Man in the High Castle, which you may recall got off to an inauspicious start with that unfortunate Nazi subway make-over, scored four recent Emmy nods. No doubt due in part to Stu’s tireless efforts. Congrats!
15. Jay Kriegel
16. Julie Hadden
17. Shirley Lord and Linda Janklow
18. Tom Rogers
20. Cast director extraordinaire Bonnie Timmermann with Oliver Stone‘s son Sean Stone. Hmmm.
21. PR maven Judy Twersky who was nice enough to introduce me to Hara Estroff Marano, whose cover story for Psychology Today poses the very timely question: Is Tech Sabotaging Your Love Life?
22. Suzanne Dawson
25. British Heritage Travel’s Jack Kliger
27.HGTV Magazine’s Sara Peterson and Dan Fuchs, Hearst’s Lauren Picciano and yours truly.
29. HSN’s Peter Rubin
Diane Clehane is a FishbowlNY contributor. Follow her on Twitter @DianeClehane. Send comments and corrections on this column to LUNCH at MEDIABISTRO dot COM.
There was a small round of editorial layoffs today at Playboy magazine. TheWrap’s Matt Donnelly has all the details, as well as a memo circulated to staff from interim parent company CEO Ben Kohn.
I am also happy to announce that Cooper Hefner has agreed to return to Playboy Enterprises. As you may know, in addition to being editor in chief of Playboy magazine, our founder, Hugh Hefner, also holds the title of chief creative officer. Cooper Hefner will be assuming this title going forward, focusing on the creative strategy around our continuing transformation into a millennial facing lifestyle brand and the reinvention of our experiences for that audience. Cooper will report to [chief marketing officer] Jared [Dougherty].
This sets up a huge potential scenario. Namely, Hef’s son playing a major role in the successful long-term reinvention of the Playboy brand.
The move comes a month after Cooper gave an interview to Business Insider, during which he harshly criticized departed CEO Scott Flanders‘ decision to remove nudity from Playboy’s U.S. website and magazine.
Cooper has penned an editorial and framed it with the tweet “exciting times ahead.” Indeed. As part of all this, Cooper is moving his new venture Hop into Playboy Enterprises.
Photo of Cooper Hefner via: Twitter
Gawker staff writer Andy Cush tweeted that his summary of Tuesday night’s “Red, White and Blacklisted” party hosted at the RNC by BuzzFeed was written “just for John Cook.” But we took a peek as well.
The item is a fun summary of the event. Especially when Cush sums up what the experience of covering Trump has felt like to him personally:
I’ve spent that [last] year watching the campaign’s forward march and its imperviousness to criticism and basic reporting, first with amusement, then in denial, then in dumb shock, then with hollow resignation to the powerlessness of journalism. So many mindless pundits have attributed Trump’s rise to the failure of the press to cover him adequately, but the press has done hardly anything other than cover him over the last several months.
So again, that’s: Denial; Dumb Shock; Hollow Resignation; Powerlessness.
The BuzzFeed party was held at Azure, downtown Cleveland’s largest rooftop bar. That word means a blueish-purple color, which, next to orange, is about the best way also to describe the way the once-Democratic leaning Trump has recolored himself GOP. Read the rest of Cush’s article here.
Image via: azure9cle.com
Refinery29 has named Amina Canter executive vp of partnerships and distribution.
Carter was most recently the COO and senior vp of business planning and development for Astronauts Wanted. She previously served as Time Warner Cable’s vp of video strategy, from 2009 to 2014.
“As content curation and distribution have moved to the platform level, digital media companies have had to confront a new reality — to create business models where the content itself, and not just the ad boxes around the content, monetize,” said Refinery29 co-founder and co-CEO Philippe von Borries, in a statement. “Amina brings deep experience and understanding of the industry, traditional as well as digital, and will work with us to advance Refinery29’s incredible momentum in creating and distributing IP in a wide range of channels.”
According to the News Guild of New York, 50 New York Times staffers have accepted the latest buyout package from the Times.
The paper announced in May that it would be seeking buyouts from staffers as part of a digital restructuring. The deadline for the buyouts was July 15.
Some staffers will be leaving the Times later this month, but most will depart between August and the end of the year.
“About half of the buyout applicants are reporters, domestic correspondents, columnists or critics,” said the News Guild, in a statement. “The prospect of the universal copy desk apparently did not have a significant impact on people’s decision-making, as only nine copy editors took the buyout.”
In the annals of ISIS front-page headlines, not too many relate to the minutiae of city council business. But thanks to a characterization delivered in Ireland by Sinn Féin Councillor Pa Daly, The Kerryman was able to greatly amplify such a topic.
The matter at hand that prompted Daly to proclaim “even ISIS wouldn’t have done this” involves the partial demolition of Sunday’s Well in Kerry. The holy artifact dates back to Pagan times and was recently modified without proper approval from Ireland’s National Monuments Service. The hero is local resident Neilus O’Shea, whose objections and monitoring halted the work.
Over at Broadsheet.ie, a site that catalogs Irish media highlights, there are some funny comments rolling in. Including one from user KieranNYC:
Irony of a SF councilor giving out about terrorists blowing up monuments.
The Kerryman, a weekly newspaper, as founded in 1904. The ISIS headline adorns its Tralee edition.
Image via: Twitter
Bustle has announced several promotions across its sales and editorial departments. Details are below.Sam Stahl has been promoted to chief revenue officer. Stahl previously served as senior vp of sales. He joined Bustle in 2014. Ryan Chambers has been named vp of sales. He was most recently director of sales. Lindsay Mannering has been promoted from deputy editor to managing editor. She previously worked for HuffPost and CafeMom. Julie Alvin has been promoted to executive editor. Alvin most recently served as deputy editor. She joined Bustle from Google in 2013.
Meredith Corporation has joined forces with Joanna Gaines and Chip Gaines—owners of the Magnolia brand—to launch a new lifestyle magazine.
The working title for the new entry is Joanna and Chip Gaines Magnolia Lifestyle. Let’s hope something better comes along before it launches in October.
The Magnolia magazine will debut with 400,000 copies available at newsstands for $7.99 a pop. Content will cover entertaining, gardening, family, outdoor living and more. The first issue will be themed “Hospitality.”
As for the perils of launching a magazine in today’s shaky media climate, Meredith National Media Group president Tom Harty isn’t worried. He said the success of the Magnolia brand will carry over.
“They [Joanna and Chip Gaines] have a broad appeal to women across generations, including Millennials and Baby Boomers alike,” said Harty. “We believe advertisers will jump at the opportunity to reach such a strong and passionate consumer.”
You hear that, advertisers?
The 1984 comedy-drama The Flamingo Kid was shot largely at the Silver Gull Beach Club in Queens. With the sad news this week that we have lost the film’s director and co-writer, Garry Marshall, here’s one great way to remember and pay tribute to a storyteller who gave us so many TV and film pleasures.
Plan to watch or rewatch The Flamingo Kid, a wonderful movie, and read – before or after – “Summer at the Silver Gull.” Under that latter title, The New York Times is chronicling a season at the Rockaway Peninsula club, launching the series over the July 4 holiday.
The initial piece is crowned by a photo of 101-year-old member David Gelfman, who joined a few years after Silver Gull opened in 1963. Gelfman, whose wife passed away last year and who as a result no longer rents a cabana, survived five hold-ups at gunpoint at a liquor store he owned through 1978 in Brooklyn.
In the second article in the series, writer Corey Kilgannon focuses on how individual members customize their cabanas, which are still priced reasonably at around $5,000 per summer (plus a $530 club membership fee for each adult):
Members rent the cabanas from summer to summer, religiously submitting their deposits — currently $500 — by Oct. 31 to hold onto their units for the next summer.
Each cabana comes with a shower, electricity, two lounge chairs and little else. Hurricane Sandy destroyed more than 50 of the units; 44 were reconstructed, and it is hard to distinguish them from the old structures. Eight others, which had occupied the terrace at the end of what is called Big Island, a block of cabanas on pilings over the sand, could not be rebuilt.
One longtime member mentioned in the piece, Randy Sachar, has a poster of The Flamingo Kid hanging in his prized cabana. Another, Linda Scarpati, has traded up over four decades through five different better-positioned cabanas.
Image via: nysilvergull.com
In the wake of a judge ruling that Gawker Media’s bankruptcy doesn’t protect founder Nick Denton, Denton said he might file for bankruptcy.
As of now, Denton is personally responsible for $10 million of the $140 million payout due to Terry “Hulk Hogan” Bollea, who sued Gawker for publishing a sex tape. Making matters worse is that Bollea’s legal attacks have been funded by PayPal founder and Facebook board member Peter Thiel.
Thiel has admitted that he was merely seeking revenge on Gawker for publishing a post about him being gay.
Gawker is currently in the process of being sold. It is also appealing the Bollea lawsuit.
“As I’ve said, Peter Thiel’s vendetta against my company may well require me as well as the company to file for bankruptcy protection until the Florida appeals court can rule on the extraordinary $140 million judgment,” said Denton, in a statement. “I’m focused now on the sale process which will conclude in a month, and maintaining the value of the business. This story will conclude with Gawker Media’s popular brands sheltered under new ownership and the importance of a free and critical press reaffirmed by the courts.”
Fox News CEO Roger Ailes is on his way out. It has become clear that it’s only a matter of when, not if. Also, a matter of money. Ailes is likely seeking a hefty payout to leave the fear-mongering network that he created.
The tide started to turn for Ailes when Gretchen Carlson sued him for sexual harassment. Days later, six more women made similar accusations. Megyn Kelly—by far Fox News’ biggest name—told 21st Century Fox investigators that Ailes harassed her. Kelly, according to New York Mag, even encouraged other Ailes victims at Fox News to come forward.
There has been reports that the Murdochs—James, Lachlan and Rupert—have given Ailes a Aug. 1 deadline. He must step down by then or risk getting fired. Yet late Tuesday, when rumors flew that Ailes was forced out with a $40 million severance package, 21st Century Fox was quick to say nothing had happened.
“Roger is at work,” read the 21st Century Fox statement. “The review is ongoing. The only agreement that is in place is his existing employment agreement.”
We’ll see how long that lasts.