The New York Times has named three new senior VPs of advertising. Details are below.Sebastian Tomich has been named senior VP for advertising and innovation. Tomic was most recently VP, advertising and branded content. Brendan Monaghan, publisher T: The New York Times Style Magazine, will continue in this role while adding senior VP of advertising to his title. Monaghan has been publisher of T since 2013. JC Demarta has also been named senior VP of advertising. He most recently served as VP, global advertising.
Saveur has added two editors to its team. Details are below.Ben Mims joins as food editor. This is return to Saveur for Mims, as he served as associate food editor at the magazine from 2008 to 2012. Mims comes to Saveur from Time Inc, where he developed and tested recipes for brands such as Food & Wine, Real Simple, All You, and InStyle. Peter Jon Lindberg has been named editor-at-large. Lindberg is the contributing international editor and senior correspondent for Condé Nast Traveler. He most recently served as Travel + Leisure’s editor-at-large. at Travel + Leisure.
It was Hollywood on the Hudson at Michael’s today, with Uma Thurman and Brian Grazer dining and dishing among the power lunch crowd. It seemed only fitting that I was joined by People and Entertainment Weekly’s editorial director Jess Cagle and group publisher Karen Kovacs, to chew over the current state of celebrity reporting and how digital is upping the ante for both brands.
Diane Clehane, Karen Kovacs and Jess Cagle
Fresh off this morning’s appearance on Good Morning America, where Jess revealed People had bestowed this year’s title of the World’s Most Beautiful Woman to Sandra Bullock, he explained the reasons behind selecting the 50 year-old Oscar-winning actress this way: “She just seemed like the right person to do right now. She is a woman who gets better and better over time and checks all the boxes. She’s got inner and outer beauty.” Jess told me he “couldn’t believe how many people asked him” if People was going to tap newlywed Amal Clooney for the title. (My two cents: I might give her Best Dressed, but Most Beautiful is another story.) He was quick to note that Sandra agreed to do a sit-down for the cover, despite having no current project to promote. Her only concern, he said, was that she didn’t want any photos of her son Louis used in the story, which was a non-issue for the magazine. “People does not run photos of celebrities’ kids unless they are at expected venues like red carpets.”
The days leading up to publication of the issue were a bit of a nail-biter since another perennial People favorite, Kate Middleton (that’s the Duchess of Cambridge to you), is about to give birth any day now. “I had the Duggars praying that she didn’t deliver early,” joked Jess, who, I suspect was only half-kidding. Karen told me that advertisers “want to be in the issue with the royal birth,” and her team had “a plan for every day of the week,” should the arrival of the British bouncing bundle of joy happen to coincide with the close of the Most Beautiful issue.
When Uma Thurman sailed by, the conversation turned to the fine art of finessing the celebrity interview. I asked Jess what he thought set People apart from the sea of virtually indistinguishable titles covering the same territory. “Access and trust,” he said. “I can’t parse the difference between Us Weekly and In Touch. With People, it’s trust.” Which is why advertisers have helped make People the largest and most profitable Time Inc. magazine media brand “delivering product to one in four women,” said Karen.
While the 41-year-old publishing behemoth is hardly showing its age, the future isn’t in print, explained Jess. With People.com racking up 72 million uniques last month, “our growth is in digital and video. People.com is poised for enormous growth.” Feeding the beast requires generating more content and video on demand, while leveraging People’s most popular franchises. Editorial director Will Lee has brought a much more dynamic and engaging look and feel to the site. Right now, the site is “teasing out” various pieces in the World’s Most Beautiful issue and will be doing more of those kinds of stories in the future. “We should be doing Sexiest Man content every day.” Veteran entertainment exec Richard Battista, the new evp of Time Inc. and president of People and Entertainment Weekly, is broadening the scope of prospective brand extensions into video production, television and licensing. People is in the “preliminary stages” of “making deals with well-known talent” to host new video projects, too. As for bringing back last year’s kudocast, neither Jess nor Karen would say the People Magazine Awards will be back next year. “An awards show might make more sense for EW,” said Jess.
Entertainment Weekly, which turns 25 this year, is in good shape, but there’s plenty of room for improvement, said Jess. “The quality of television today ensures the survival of EW if we capitalize it. EW is the most under-leveraged [brand].” While there’s the potential for some cross-over with People on both the editorial and business sides, “it’s important to maintain the brands’ individual voice,” said Karen. But that doesn’t mean it can’t get a boost now and then from People. Next month, the two brands will co-host its first Upfront party here in New York at the High Line Hotel.
Jess, who has been with Time Inc. for an unbelievable 28 years (he started out as an intern at People in 1986) told me he’s looking forward to the planned move downtown later this year, where print and digital will be housed on one floor in an open newsroom floor plan. “It’s old school,” he said, but at the same time it will help facilitate a stronger connection between print and the 24/7 cycle of digital. Does this mean there will be more layoffs and buyouts in the future? “We’ve done all the attrition we can do,” said Jess, who added that he expects to hire more writers once the dust settles. “This is the most exciting and transformational time to be at People and Entertainment Weekly.”
Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:
1. Hector DeJean of St. Martin’s Press, presiding over a table full of literary folks we didn’t get to meet
2. Wayne Kabak and Bill Hemmer
3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and David Zinczenko
4. Sony’s Martin Bandier
5. Uma Thurman, who, I’m happy to report, looked fabulous without makeup. She sailed into the dining room, air kissed her assistant and was later joined by Town & Country editor Jay Fielden and some other casually clad folks. Brian Grazer stopped by the table to say his hellos.
6. Dr. Gerald Imber, Jerry Della Femina, Michael Kramer and Andy Bergman
8. Lally Weymouth
9. Christina Wayne and Marshall Brickman talking television
11. PMK*BNC’s chairman and CEO Cindi Berger
12. Faith Consolo
14. Brian Grazer and David Zaslav (yes, he was wearing his fleece vest)
15. Jack Kliger and Nina Link
16. Larry Spangler
17. Jay Kriegel
18. Ron Dozoretz
20. Producer Joan Gelman and radio legend Joan Hamburg
21. Jon Ledecky, who, we’re told, is part owner of the New York Islanders
22. Robert Keating
23. Jim Abernethy
24. Ron Kramer
25. PR maestro Tom Goodman with Bloomberg Media Group’s Steve Nazaruk
26. Fashionista Harriet Weintraub
27. Alexandra Lebenthal
28. Patrick Murphy
29. Financial Times’ Gillian Tett
81. Author Wednesday Martin whose new book, The Primates of Park Avenue, is raising eyebrows among the Upper East Side set
Diane Clehane is a FishbowlNY contributor. Follow her on Twitter @DianeClehane. Send comments and corrections on this column to LUNCH at MEDIABISTRO dot COM.
Certainly it's no easy task for a brand to position itself as sustainable, in a world dominated by scorched-earth, winner-take-all global capitalism. However, the organizers of the four-day Sustainable Brands event remain optimistic.
In advance of Friday’s closely guarded Diane Sawyer 20/20 interview special with Bruce Jenner, journalist Ross Forman shared a captivating recent conversation with a person who blazed the transgender media trail.
Now 80, Renée Richards is wrapping up some final professional activities this year, with plans to then retire in Florida. From the Windy City Times interview:
Richards lives about 80 minutes north of New York City, “in the country, in the woods, on the water,” she said of the English cottage she has called home for about 15 years. She lives with her best friend and former office manager of about 30 years — a straight, widowed woman. Richards stopped operating [as an ophthalmologist] at the end of 2014 and will stop seeing patients later this year. Then the two, and their two dogs, will head south.
Sure, she has a tennis court about 50 feet from her home, but she stopped playing a long time ago. She picked up golf about 20 or 25 years ago, and that’s her sporting pleasure these days — her latest sporting venture.
Richards was, mind you, a New York native who played competitive football team as a teen, participated in swimming meets and was such a talented baseball pitcher that she often attracted the interest of pro scouts.
Begs to wonder, what if… and yes, she too, thinks about what if she opted for a different life path as opposed to tennis. “I had ability in baseball. Who knows what would have happened with my life if I ever [got to] pitch in Yankee Stadium. I don’t know. But I’m not good at woulda, coulda, shoulda. I don’t like that,” she said.
Richards was in the eye of the media storm long before Jenner, who today says he will sue the paparazzi agency that provided the New York Daily News with an invasive Malibu shot obtained via telephoto lens. She talks Forman about a number of other topics, including her most recent book Spy Night and Other Memories: A Collection of Stories from Dick and Renee. Earlier this year, Richards wrote a brief op-ed for AlJazeera America about Jenner and denied reports she was acting as his so-called “sex change coach.”
[Jacket cover courtesy: Keith Publications LLC]
LostRemote: According to a new survey, 68 percent of consumers engage in binge-watching. In related news, the sun is bright and hurts our eyes.
AgencySpy: Want to f*ck with people and maybe sell some jeans? Install treadmill in a fitting room.
PRNewser: Google only wants to be friends with those who are friends with mobile readers.
Paper, a magazine most people had never heard of until Kim Kardashian West posed naked for its cover, now has another big star for its front: Kim’s husband, Kanye West.
Kanye’s cover, to the disappointment of many, features a lot less oily butt than Kim’s cover. It’s still quite good though.
The National Center on Sexual Exploitation was founded in 1962. Three years later, Helen Gurley Brown arrived at Cosmopolitan magazine and dramatically re-invented the moribund publication.
This morning, at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., Victoria Hearst, granddaughter of William Randolph and a scion of Cosmo’s parent company, officially met the press to officially launch her Center-backed “Cosmo Harms Minors” campaign. The effort aims to put Cosmopolitan behind a blinder or inside an opaque wrapper at newsstands, and limit the sale of the magazine to adults. On Breitbart.com, one of Hearst’s partners in the campaign, Miriam Grossman M.D., is explaining the initiative:
Ms. Hearst is 100 percent correct: Cosmo is popular among teen girls, and the lifestyle it celebrates can be dangerous, even deadly, for them. The health hazards of early sexual activity, multiple casual partners, and anal intercourse – choices promoted in nearly every issue of Cosmo – have been described by Michelle Cretella M.D., president of the American College of Pediatricians.
What’s less well known, but just as serious, are the dangers of sex-centric magazines like Cosmo to girls’ emotional lives.
As documented in a report by the American Psychological Association, sexualization has significant negative mental health consequences for girls. According to the report, sexualization occurs \"when a person is held to a standard that equates physical attractiveness (narrowly defined) with being sexy,\" and when \"a person is… made into a thing for others’ sexual use, rather than seen as a person with the capacity for independent action and decision making.\"
The Twitter feed for the campaign is @NoCosmoMinors. Hearst lists other ways to support her initiative here. She was joined at today’s 10:00 a.m. D.C. press conference by Dawn Hawkins, executive director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, and the above-referenced Grossman.
Take a look at any cover of American Bungalow, and you can tell this isn’t a magazine about the colloquially termed shack on a lake you rent for a weekend. The lettering, in a style reminiscent of architectural icon Frank Lloyd Wright, hints at the magazine’s mission: to document the exteriors and interiors of structures built between the 1880s and the 1940s, and the stories of those who live in them.
For writers interested in pitching the mag, there’s no need to pass through the FOB on your way to the features well, as long as you can show you know your stuff when it comes to bungalows:
American Bungalow wants freelancers to dive right into the features well. These could be stories about individual homes in the Craftsman Bungalow style (homes that were built from the 1900s to 1940s), their backstories, and details of how the homeowners acquired and renovated the bungalows. Editors are also interested in features on bungalow homes that are part of a greater bungalow neighborhood, as well as new constructions in the bungalow revival style and/or atypical architecture from the time period — especially handcrafted features and artisan furniture and artwork.
For more, including other sections ripe for pitching, read: How To Pitch: American Bungalow
The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.
While Sandra Bullock being anointed the latest recipient of a goofy annual magazine honor is not exactly the equivalent of Thor’s hammer being taken to the age of preturnatural magazine covers, it’s still an encouraging sign. Bullock has reacted with her trademark sense of humor:
Bullock insists she just laughed when she heard about the honor. “No, really. I just said, ‘That’s ridiculous,’ ” she tells People. “I’ve told no one.”
In one of the sidebars, People notes that this week is the 20th anniversary exactly of Bullock’s first big romantic comedy hit, While You Were Sleeping. Bullock turns 51 in July.
While the app is mostly the same, some notable changes include bigger photos, stories and multimedia content grouped together by subject, and a “daily brief,” which was a core component of the NYTNow app.
Another big addition is that—for the first time—a group of Times editors spread across three continents will be selecting content with mobile readers in mind. That’s a nice change, as sometimes content does not transfer well from print or desktop to mobile.
To get this amazing cover, the artist JR pasted a giant image of a man walking onto Flatiron Plaza and then photographed it from a helicopter.
Congrats to all, because this is an early contender for Cover of The Year.
Jessica Cumberbatch Anderson has been named site director for ElleDecor.com and Veranda.com. She comes to Hearst Magazines from The Huffington Post, where she served as home editor. Anderson had been with Huff Post since 2011.
Anderson previously worked for Martha Stewart Living and has contributed to Essence and HGTV.com.
Anderson’s appointment is effective April 30.
(Image: Mater Mea/Jennifer Currell)
It must be national Relaunch Your Website week. One day after The Wall Street Journal debuted its new site, The Atlantic has unveiled a redesign of TheAtlantic.com. The good news for readers is that both revamped sites are big improvements.
The new TheAtlantic.com is less chaotic than the previous site and places more of an emphasis on images. Just look at the homepage pictured above; that’s what you call pleasing to the eye. In an announcement, James Bennet, The Atlantic’s co-president and editor-in-chief, said one goal of the revamp was cleaning things up.
“There’s enough clutter and distraction out there already. We wanted to bring the classic Atlantic values of focus and impact to bear on the urgency of the Web, to give our journalism the visual power we think big ideas deserve.”
We certainly appreciate the changes, and we think you will too.
New York has named Gabriel Sherman national affairs editor. Sherman has been a contributing editor for New York since 2008. Sherman is also the author of the Roger Ailes biography The Loudest Voice in the Room.
As national affairs editor, Sherman will add politics and business to his coverage, in addition to media, real estate and Wall Street. He will write features, a regular column for the print magazine, and a weekly column for NYMag.com.
Sherman’s appointment is effective May 1.
Joshua Ferris, author of the award-winnning Then We Came to the End and several other books, is writing a four part series for Popular Mechanics. The series will follow Ferris’ experiences learning to fly a single-prop airplane.
In the first installment—available online and in Popular Mechanics’ May issue—Ferris describes how going through an emergency landing as a passenger made him afraid to fly. Then, before his first training flight, Ferris has a classic exchange with his instructor Tom:
‘What’s the worst that can happen to me?’ I asked Tom before we took our first flight together.
‘On a training flight?’
I nodded. Tom and I were very different men, if based only on our choice of professions. I’m a writer who never enjoys lifting my butt off the office chair. Ideally I don’t leave the house, and a perfect day is one in which I don’t get out of bed. Tom, on the other hand, departs the earth multiple times a day.
‘People unfortunately die in flight training,’ he said after a long pause. ‘I would think that would be the worst thing.’