In another sign that the economics of print magazines are eroding, New York -- which has published as a weekly since it launched in 1968 -- will publish as an every-other-weekly beginning in March 2014. While it will continue to publish dynamically on the Web and via its mobile and tablet applications, the symbolism of the print frequency change is that the uber city magazine is shifting from a New York minute to a fortnightly.
“We’ve talked about this for a while and you can’t help but get wistful about it,” Editor in Chief Adam Moss told the New York Times, the uber city paper, which still publishes a print edition daily, but broke this story late Sunday night in its digital edition.
“But I would be more concerned if we didn't address how the market and people’s reading habits have changed,” Moss explained to the Times, adding, “I would not be doing this if I didn't believe we could make a better magazine and continue to grow what we do both in print and online.”
In a statement released this morning, New York Media, the company that publishes New York magazine, noted that it actually only publishes 42 issues annually now, and will effectively publish 29 issues annually during calendar year 2014. The changes take effect with the issue dated March 3, 2014. In addition to the regular bi-weekly issues, it said three additional "special issues" would cover "a single subject from top to bottom."
"The new magazine will have roughly 20 percent more editorial content per issue, with more visuals; a new fashion section called the Cut; and new columnists writing on Hollywood, sex, and business, reflecting the continued integration of print and digital," it stated.
The Times article pointed out
that New York's retrenchment follows a series of other high-profile retrenchments by the consumer magazine industry, including Newsweek's decision to drop its print edition
altogether, and Time Warner's decision to spin-off magazine publishing unit Time Inc.
The article also noted that like Newsweek, which was acquired by its late benefactor, Sidney Harmon, New York was acquired in 2004 by billionaire Bruce Wasserstein, who died in 2009, raising questions about the long-term viability of benefactor models for print publications -- which could also be a concern for the newspaper industry following Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos' acquisition of The Washington Post and John W. Henry's purchase of The Boston Globe from The New York Times Co.