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August 15 2012


Gossip magazine's celebrity wedding photos broke law, court says

Los Angeles Times :: A panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2 to 1 that Maya Magazines, publisher of TVNotas,” a Spanish-language magazine about celebrities, had no legal right to publish the photographs of the 2007 Las Vegas wedding of Noelia Monge, a pop singer and model, to Jorge Reynosa, a music producer and her manager.

A report by Maura Dolan, latimesblogs.latimes.com

HT: First Amendment Center: "Divided 9th Circuit: Tabloid’s fair-use claim falls flat"

Tags: Magazine

Todd Pruzan: Mags make branded content, so why not act more like brands?

AdAge :: Cars, banks, fashion labels -- these brands can build their identity through the branded content they publish online or post in social media. But a magazine isn't a car. Its brand identity is its content. These aren't discrete concepts supporting each other. They're indivisible.

[Todd Pruzan:] ... magazines must be about the purest type of branded content on the market.

Todd Pruzan is editorial director at iCrossing. He has worked at magazines including Conde Nast Portfolio, Details, Print, Blender and Chicago.

An opinion piece by Todd Pruzan, adage.com

Tags: Magazine
Sponsored post

August 13 2012


An airplane which suddenly drops 10,000 feet: Magazine business

Newsstand sales numbers are down 10 to 20 percent. "Historically, certain categories of magazine will encounter turbulence, but this time all categories were punished in the pileup," writes David Carr. Parse.ly conclude's that it's not a problem of the medium (print vs. digital), arguing that tablet-only magazines are in free-fall, too, but of the entire magazine market, which is "overpopulated."

New York Times :: Making a weekly newsmagazine has always been a tough racket. It takes a big staff working on punishing deadlines to aggregate the flurry of news, put some learned topspin on it and package it for readers. But that job now belongs to the Web and takes place in real time, not a week later.

[David Carr:] ... magazines, all kinds of them, don’t work very well in the marketplace anymore.

A report by David Carr, www.nytimes.com

April 15 2012


Reviewing the Next Issue app, a buffet of magazines

New York Times :: Unlimited movies (Netflix). Unlimited music (Spotify). Unlimited train travel (Europass). Unlimited seafood buffet (Red Lobster). And now, ladies and gentlemen: unlimited magazines to read on your tablet. Introducing the Next Issue app. Five big magazine publishers — Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corporation and Time Inc. — have collaborated to create this service, much the way a collaboration of TV networks started Hulu.com.

Continue to read David Pogue, www.nytimes.com

Tags: Magazine

Sara Eileen Hames: 24 hours for an entire magazine (23:59, 23:58, ...)

Guardian :: At the first editorial meeting of twenty-four magazine, I turned to the staff of 10 and asked: "Do any of you know what this magazine is going to be about?" All of them shook their heads. "How many of you have worked in magazines before?" Four hands went up, including my own, and there was a round of nervous laughter. One day later, we published our first issue.

Continue to read Sara Eileen Hames, www.guardian.co.uk

Tags: Magazine

Tom Lamont: 'Magazines will always have a place on people's shelves'

Guardian :: In the basement of a London bar, gathered like a resistance movement or thralls to some secret perversion, 100 people have come together to discuss their passion for magazines. They particularly like the independently made, keep-it-on-your-bookshelf-afterwards type of mag, but organisers have encouraged the aficionados to share any and all new treasures they've found, regardless of subject or appearance. So long as it's made of paper and ink.

[Tom Lamont:] Mainstream magazines might be struggling to survive against digital media, but their independent counterparts are thriving.

Continue to read Tom Lamont, www.guardian.co.uk

Tags: Magazine

March 30 2012


Fashion industry leads: Target your audience with a niche approach instead of advertising

memeburn :: Why spend thousands to advertise in a top-notch magazine while you can start a whole new publication online for the same amount? That is exactly the current mind-set of more and more companies, which have discovered that targeting your audience with a niche approach pays off better than advertising. Why? Well, who wouldn’t like a brand that thinks creatively outside the box? Printing their own publications. The fashion industry seems to be leading the pack with this increasingly popular trend.

Continue to read Talita Calitz, memeburn.com

August 02 2011


Crazy move? - Bloomberg Businessweek increases paid circulation +10pc

Act of desperation or smart strategic move?

AdAge :: Magazines once pumped up paid circulation as far as they could, even if customer acquisition, paper, printing and distribution costs overwhelmed any circulation revenue they got, because advertisers seeking big audiences made it worthwhile. In a rather unusual move for the magazine business these days, Bloomberg Businessweek is increasing the paid circulation it promises advertisers to 980,000 early next year from 900,000 now, more than undoing the prior owner's rate base cut in 2006.

Continue to read Nat Ives, adage.com

July 25 2011


Longshot magazine - real-time experiment in magazine publishing

Forbes :: How to make a magazine in two days? - Announce your theme at noon on a Friday using all of the powers of social media at your disposal. Give potential contributors 24 hours to create and submit their masterpieces. Spend the next 24 hours in a sleepless, coffee-powered editing haze. Have the finished product (complete with polished design) available for printing via MagCloud at the 48 hour mark.

Sound crazy?

Continue to read J. Maureen Henderson, blogs.forbes.com

July 20 2011


Future Publishing to sell or close eight magazines - too much "redundancies"

Guardian :: Future Publishing is to sell or close eight of its magazines, including Hi-Fi Choice and What Satellite & Digital TV, as it battles against a fall in profits. The publisher, which employs 1,000 people in Bath, told staff on Friday that there would be up to 100 redundancies as it admitted problems with its US business will wipe £2m from its full years earnings.

Continue to read Josh Halliday, www.guardian.co.uk

July 07 2011


Jack Essig named to lead Hearst's Esquire and Men's Enthusiast Group

AdWeek :: Hearst Magazines' Michael Clinton had long been a fan of Men's Health publisher Jack Essig, but it took years to find the right offer to lure him over to the women's title-heavy Hearst. The opportunity came with Hearst’s purchase of Hachette Filipacchi Media, including its car titles. On Wednesday, Essig was officially named senior vice president, publishing director, and chief revenue officer of Hearst’s Esquire and its newly formed Men’s Enthusiast Group, which includes Popular Mechanics, Car and Driver, and Road & Track.

Continue to read Lucia Moses, www.adweek.com

June 11 2011


Storytelling - The Atavist: multimedia enriched digital magazine experience

Read Write Web :: The structure for The Atavist is similar to a magazine at first glance: create an assignment for a freelance journalist, who goes out and writes a story. However, The Atavist is much more involved in the creation of a story than a traditional magazine publisher. While the writer goes out and gets the core story, The Atavist gathers other media around it and creates a multimedia package for their apps.

As Co-founder Evan Ratliff explained, "we actually have control over the [publishing] environment. We can build our own way of seeing the story." The result is like a combination of documentary and magazine article.

Continue to read Richard MacManus, www.readwriteweb.com

June 05 2011


iPad apps News.me, Idea Flight - What media companies need to learn from startups

GigaOM :: By now, there are plenty of examples of mainstream media companies pumping out newspaper and magazine iPad apps that look exactly like their printed product — the San Francisco Chronicle just joined the crowd — as well as putting up paywalls, and so on. But few of these companies are doing anything different or innovative. Why? Because most large companies in an industry that is more than a century old simply aren’t equipped to really innovate.

Continue to read Mathew Ingram, gigaom.com

May 30 2011


Harvard Business Review - one and a half year later reinvention is paying off

New York Times :: Shortly after editors at the Harvard Business Review tore up their magazine in 2009, adding pictures to the cover, reader comments to their signature case studies and colorful illustrations — the horror! — cranky reader comments started coming in. But a year and a half later, the magazine’s editors say that worries about alienating its readers have proved unfounded.

[Adi Ignatius, editor of the Harvard Business Review Group] Newsstand is way up, renewals are way up, advertising is way up. And it’s not a situation where a rising tide lifts all boats.

Continue to read Jeremy W. Peters, mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com

September 24 2010


How to create a wordpress magazine theme using Twenty Ten – Part 4

This is part three of a short series outlining how to tweak a wordpress template to get some magazine style functionality. Part onePart Two and Part three are available here.

In part three of this short series we looked at adding a second loop to our edited index page to get round the problem of our Featured Post being repeated on the front page. In this final part I’ll look at adding a thumbnail and styling up the page.

Image thumbnails

Over the years, theme designers magazine themes have come up with many weird and wonderful ways of getting thumbnail images on front pages. But it’s only recently that WordPress developers added solid support.

One of the things I wanted to do with this series is to avoid too much tweaking of files. So I’m going to be relying on some of the core features for wordpress to get thumbnails on the page rather than fancy tricks. So beefore we get back in to editing the template code to display thumbnails there are few things we need to check.

Media settings

When you add an image to a blog post you are given the option to add it as a thumbnail, medium, large or original size. We are going to be using the standard function to to get a thumbnail (you may remember it from part 1) and it uses the same shorthand to get an image



The sizes for each these are set in the Media section of the settings tab.

The image size options

So our edited front-page is going to be based on these sizes. If you want any other sizes for your page you should set them here first. The downside of working this way is that this will impact on the sizes of images placed in your blog posts -that’s the trade off of keeping things simple.

Adding a featured image.

Version 2.9 of WordPress included a new post thumbnail option which allowed you to define an image to display “as the representative image for a Post or Page. The display of this images is up to the theme. This is especially useful for “magazine-style” themes where each post has an image.” The feature was renamed “featured image” in wordpress 3.0 – I’m guessing to avoid confusion with thumbnails. Whatever it’s called it’s ideal for our front page.

Adding a featured image

When you write a post you should see a panel called Featured Image. Clicking the Add featured image link opens up a standard image browser. You simply find the image you want to use and click the Use as Featured Image link and you’re done.

So before we go on, add a featured image to the post in your Featured Story category.

Adding the thumbnail to the template

Now that we have set up the Featured image we can edit our template file and get an image on our frontpage.

Open up the Main Index Template file and add the following and edit the first loop so it looks like this:


Our medium thumbnail

Now do the same with the second loop.


Thumbnails added to each loop

And that’s it.

Adding some style.

Technically we are done. All the elements we want are on the page. But it’s not looking as good as it could be. We need to add some styling information and make some amendments to the stylesheet file.

I’m not going to go in to a big write up of CSS here (try the excellent W3Schools for a basic intro) but if you’re interested in tweaking wordpress templates it’s one of those areas you’ll be spending a lot of time with.

For now, its enough that when dealing with stylesheets, we need to keep our eye open for two things; divs and classes.


If you look at the Main Index template file, you’ll see the following lines



The div tag is an html element that doesn’t actually display anything by default, it defines a section of the page. When it comes to look and feel, the key part is the id . This ‘connects’ the div to display instructions defined in the stylesheet. The style definition for container is:

#container {
float: left;
margin: 0 -240px 0 0;
width: 100%;

Anything that sits between the div tags will be effected by this definition.


One restriction of ID’s is that you can only use them once on a page. So if you have a lot of elements on a page that you want to style you have to use a class. Remember the html we used for our post title:



That means we take the standard H2 formatting and add some custom styling.
#content .entry-title {
color: #000;
font-size: 21px;
font-weight: bold;
line-height: 1.3em;
margin-bottom: 0;

This says, any time the class entry-title (denoted by the full-stop) is referenced inside the content div (denoted by the # symbol) apply the following styling.

Image Alignment

The first thing to sort out is the alignment of the images. I’m going to cheat a little here and pick up the standard style call for images.

Change the post_thumbnail function call in the first loop to the following :

“alignleft”)); ?>

The post thumbnail function allows you to stack extra information in parameters that can be ‘added’ to the code as it’s generated. We have stuffed a reference to a style called alignleft. If you call up the Stylesheet file in the theme editor you can find the definiton of that style (you may have to search for while)

#content .alignleft,
#content img.alignleft {
display: inline;
float: left;
margin-right: 24px;
margin-top: 4px;

This is very similar to our post title example above but this time there is also a reference to the image tag (img).

To finish up we can add the same class to the thumbnail call in the second loop:
Change the post_thumbnail function call in the first loop to the following :

“alignleft”)); ?>

Boxing in the featured story

To make my featured story stand out I’m going to wrap it in a grey box. To start with I’m going to use a DIV to define that extent of the box.


…the rest of the loop….


I’ve added a new DIV tag with an id called FeaturedStory and closed the div after the end of the loop.

If you update the file and looked at the page you should see nothing new. Remember DIV tags don’t show up till you style them.

Open the Stylesheet file in the editor window and scroll all the way down to the bottom. Add the following:

#FeaturedStory {
background: #f7f7f7;
color: #222;
margin-bottom: 18px;
padding: 1.5em;
height: 350px;

This does the following:

  • Changes the background colour to grey
  • Changes the text colour to a dark grey
  • Pads the bottom of the box with 18 pixels of space
  • Pads the all the way round with 1.5 em of space
  • Sets the height of the box to 350pixels

Save the file and look at the results. You’ll see a box around the featured content.


That’s pretty much it. We’ve pulled in a featured post and thumbnail to go with it. Then we added a second loop to pull in the rest of the posts without duplicating our featured post on the page and added a thumbnail to them. Then we styled the results to align the thumbnail and wrap the featured post in a box to make it stand out.

Along the way we’ve touched on PHP, functions, variables and stylesheets. All of which are play a big part in theme development. But we have done it all with the minimum of alteration to the core theme files.

Some issues

This method is not without its issues. Editing the raw files like this is risky if you forget to back things up. There is also the risk that if the theme is updates by wordpress (as it is from time to time) then your customization will be deleted. But the exercise has been more about some of the basic concepts than a robust solution.

So I hope you found it useful and it made sense. Here’s the finished Main index template file:

* The main template file.
* This is the most generic template file in a WordPress theme
* and one of the two required files for a theme (the other being style.css).
* It is used to display a page when nothing more specific matches a query.
* E.g., it puts together the home page when no home.php file exists.
* Learn more: http://codex.wordpress.org/Template_Hierarchy
* @package WordPress
* @subpackage Twenty_Ten
* @since Twenty Ten 1.0

get_header(); ?>

/* This is the new loop to display a featured story.
* It creates a variable and then loads all the posts that match the query.

$my_query = new WP_Query('category_name=Featured Story&showposts=1');

/* Now it loops through the results and displays the content.

while ($my_query->have_posts()) : $my_query->the_post();
$do_not_duplicate = $post->ID;

/* We load the Page ID in to a variable to check for duplicates later on
* Then it displays the title as a working link with formatting to
* match the Twenty Ten template.
* Then we display the excerpt.
* Then we finish the loop with the endwhile statement

“alignleft”)); ?>

/* This is the second loop that replaces the standard loop
* It uses the standard loop function calls

if (have_posts()) : while (have_posts()) : the_post();

if( $post->ID == $do_not_duplicate ) continue;

/* This line gets the post ID and checks it agains our duplicate variable
* If it matches it does nothing. If it’s different we display the content


“alignleft”)); ?>

/* Run the loop to output the posts.
* If you want to overload this in a child theme then include a file
* called loop-index.php and that will be used instead.
//get_template_part( 'loop', 'index' );


Don’t forget, you need to update the Stylesheet file as well.

Questions, comments etc always welcome

September 20 2010


July 23 2010


March 26 2010


4 Minute Roundup: Google Uncensored in China; iPad Mania for Mags

This episode of 4MR is brought to you by GoDaddy, helping you set up your own website in a snap with domain name registration, web hosting and 24/7 support. Visit GoDaddy to learn more.

Here's the latest 4MR audio report from MediaShift. In this week's edition, I look at Google's recent move to stop censoring its site in China and instead redirect traffic to its uncensored Hong Kong site. Google is also running real-time search results and asking Congress to punish countries that filter the Net, but will the move backfire? Plus, magazine publishers are moving quickly developing iPad apps and even selling advertising on their apps before they even exist. Will people pay for those apps? I ask Just One Question to Susan Currie Sivek about how the iPad will change the magazine business.

Check it out:


>>> Subscribe to 4MR <<<

>>> Subscribe to 4MR via iTunes <<<

Listen to my entire interview with Susan Currie Sivek:

Background music is "What the World Needs" by the The Ukelele Hipster Kings via PodSafe Music Network.

Here are some links to related sites and stories mentioned in the podcast:

Google's Tangled Chinese Web at WSJ

Google Shuts China Site in Dispute Over Censorship at NY Times

Google's China Temporary Redirect Shenanigans at MediaPost

Google adds Twitter feed in China, again defying that country's rules at LA Times

Google Calls for Action on Web Limits at NY Times

U.S. Push on Internet Freedom Could Backfire at WSJ's Real-Time China blog

Advertisers Show Interest in iPad at NY Times

Apple Scrambles to Secure iPad Deals at WSJ

Advertisers Break Out Checkbooks for iPad Magazine Deals at WSJ Digits

Magazines Use the iPad as Their New Barker at WSJ

WSJ on iPad for $17.99 a month, magazines to be at or near newsstand prices? at Engadget

Check out some of the write-in answers of our recent poll asking what people thought about their cable and satellite TV service:

cable survey grab.jpg

Also, be sure to vote in our poll about how you think the iPad will affect the media industry:

Fill in the blank: The iPad will ______ the media industry.survey

Mark Glaser is executive editor of MediaShift and Idea Lab. He also writes the bi-weekly OPA Intelligence Report email newsletter for the Online Publishers Association. He lives in San Francisco with his son Julian. You can follow him on Twitter @mediatwit.

This episode of 4MR is brought to you by GoDaddy, helping you set up your own website in a snap with domain name registration, web hosting and 24/7 support. Visit GoDaddy to learn more.

This is a summary. Visit our site for the full post ».

March 20 2010


January 05 2010

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