Sunday, 19 October 2014

Inside the Great Magazines: Episode 3

Episode 3 

Mags, Inc.

(extraordinary influence)

Media Universe of todays society, 
never have we been so exposed to information
both images and text

The magazine is in crisis due to the facile content many now print, 
our hyper-capitalist view = the main objective to make money

For instance TIME magazine used to be almost a primary source of information, but now it is rivalled with the internet and 24hr news channels. 
The role of the magazine is changing rapidly. 

The new american magazine culture all exists in one place, and the who's who dines at 'Micheal's' where you sit determines how high up you are. 

Conde Nast
Time Inc

Are the three main magazine companies of america and the world. 

But it is an ever-changing market, Time Inc had been the most affected.

How do you sell news and information ? And what is the future or magazines ?

Editors, writers and photographers are what made a magazine their passion and enthusiasm. 

The consumer is less interested now, as they are overloaded with information.
Time Inc reported losses of around $99 billion
What will sustain the magazine ?

A greater need for knowing how to sell magazines is being sought after. 
However Time Inc is still one of the most powerful and Time Warner is the largest media company in the world.

Now magazines and their content are interested in their marketing strategy, they mainly stick to the comfortable, un controversial so that they do not upset their sponsors and advertisers. People are made to feel happy, not upset or disturbed and this happiness encourages sales.

Celebrities have become essential for selling magazines, and feature on almost every front cover. It is a billion dollar industry. 

Even paparazzi question the interest in celebrities, one might be risking their lives in war trying to get a photograph that will sell for $500 whereas another may see a celebrity drinking a coffee and earn $10,000 for that image. Celebrities sell.

The Tatler was a magazine created purely for gossip, and created itself as a giant at the height of Princess Diana and the royal wedding selling the ideal of English heritage and lifestyle is was hugely popular. 

Vanity Fair, created in the 1920's had almost completely vanished and no editors wanted to revitalise the magazine except Tina Brown. (The magazine was bought by Conde Nast)

They then began portraying celebrities and hit gold. 

Annie Leibovitz shot one of the most controversial images that was to be used on the cover of Vanity Fair. This was of Demi Moore, pregnant and nude. It was completely shocking to see a pregnant woman nude.

Vanity Fair also had a counter strand of deeper more important content but according to Tina Brown this is dying out.

Celebrities are becoming the only thing that magazines will cover.

Bonnie Fuller, turned Star into a magazine which is immensely popular filled with everything about celebrities, full of idiotic information, like a celebrity getting a coffee.

These magazines have become glossy, seductive, and slightly pornographic.

Money is the main motivator
There can't be our profit and the whole truth.

Tina Brown also states that there are other things going on in the world that no-one is writing about and one day we will regret it massively. 

Magazine do still need to cover the big stories, such as the war in Iraq (TIME) 
3 Reporters lived with the 'Tomb Raiders' a patrol of american solders in Iraq, many reporters are now finding themselves going to the most dangerous places in the world and doing it with a huge risk or death, kidnapping, injury etc, to date (of the documentary) 35 journalists where killed at war, a dozen of them where actually targeted purposefully. 

The 3 reporters shot the diversity in the military 
Billy Grimes amongst the solders was a female field paramedic.
One evening all 3 reporters where returning to base when a grenade was thrown into the van and one reporter picked it up thinking it was a stone when in fact it was a grenade he attempted to throw it out of the vehicle but it detonated and blew of his hand and injured one of the other reporters. Billy Grimes in the vehicle behind jumped out to their aid and her tourniquet is said to have saved the reporters life.

No other annual issue sells more than TIME's man of the year issue. The American Solder was selected as the 'man/person of the year' that year, the cover featured the 'diversity' of solders including Billy Grimes. And the issue had a 16 page spread on the solders and the story of the reporters. 

5.6 million copies where printed of this issue (first print)
And then spread across the globe. 

However this can be seen as a marketing scheme, good with investors and share-holders, the focus was on the young men and women risking their lives for their country. 

The selection for the issue was controversial to others. Some saw it as an 'American Fabrication' , but it made the solders feel appreciated, different perspectives on the world. 

Paris Match
coverage still attracts readers, 
they cover big news and when there isn't a big story they look into celebrities and personalities.
Denounce injustice, promotes democracy
looks at all parts of life, everything
Magazines conveyers of meaning.

One magazine that relies on corporate patronage but still brings an independent perspective. 
Created in Treviso, funded by the United Colors of Benetton, yet they keep an arms distance and let the magazine and its writers have their freedom. 
New global view about the human condition, its about doing things no one else covers.
Provocative in that it has no celebrity focus, 'the rest of the world' is its focus and slogan.
Their content has upset and disrupted people, it covers unpleasant and ugly issues, its unfamiliar 
It also shows to the world its not all about America
and that the world is full of complications and interesting, communities that are left out of mass media are covered.

originally named Voice, but had to change their name
"no voice, no national voice for what we want" - Shane Smith, co-founder of Vice
Gavin McInnes is the other founder,
criticise what is happening to magazines in todays culture and so instead of just criticising they created there own magazine, 
a revolution in publishing
for the '18-35' year old urbanite
and is now distributed in 18 more countries
'Hipster Culture' a huge culture that isn't covered in mass media, 
Liberating the the 'unbeautiful' and ignored, one issue covered disabled people, and the mentally ill 
Protocol has killed journalism and art

in Kabul is the first womens magazine in a decade, where the women who are editing the magazine are trying to bring Afghani women into the 21st century, talking about issues and spreading the word, this is the basis of all magazines. 

Do we still need great magazines ? 
Story telling is a fundamental in our lives, and narratives of who we are.

No comments:

Post a Comment