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Posts Tagged ‘magazine industry’

That's Why They Call It Conde Nasty — New Hotline Helps Colleagues Drop A Dime On Each Other

In business, Media on February 3, 2010 at 9:04 am
US Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour (2ndL) a...

Vogue editor Anna Wintour, in green.Image by AFP/Getty Images via Daylife

That’s my kind of corporation! Rat out your colleagues, courtesy of an in-house hotline. Reports the New York Post:

Insiders got a memo yesterday from Chief Financial Officer John Bellando, revealing that the company set up the hotline to stop the “release of proprietary information, accounting/audit irregularities, falsification of company records, theft of goods/services/cash,” and even “unauthorized discounts/payoffs.”

This could put a damper on some of the perks inside S.I. Newhouse Jr.‘s empire.

Last fall a hacker broke into Condé’s system and stole early copies of GQ, Vogue and other magazines, which were posted online.

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Yesterday’s move seemed to put the brakes on CEO Charles Townsend‘s happiness campaign. Trying to boost morale after 2009′s turmoil and layoffs, he recently did a coast-to-coast tour to give a corporate pep talk and encourage staffers to “get their mojo back.”

Conde Nast, named for the man who founded the publishing empire in 1909 by acquiring Vogue, is legendary in Manhattan publishing circles for its elite worldview. The 2006 film “The Devil Wears Prada”, starring Meryl Streep, is said to be based on Anna Wintour, long-time Vogue editor.

I interviewed at Conde Nast a few times, but never got hired there. It’s a great place to have on your resume, but maybe — now — not such a cosy place to crank out copy.

No Shelter For Shelter Books — 'Metropolitan Home' Shut Down After 26 Years

In Media, Style on November 9, 2009 at 4:08 pm
Magazines

Image via Wikipedia

Another shelter book, and another longstanding national magazine devoted to celebrating the good life, has bit the dust. Metropolitan Home has been killed after 26 years. Parent company HFMUS plans to focus its resources on its in-house competitor, luxe, international Elle Decor instead.

I remember Met Home back when it was Apartment Life, long before Dwell, Nest, Wallpaper or Domino (now-dead) showed up. I was much sadder when House & Garden was closed and I still miss the elegant reflectiveness of Dominique Browning’s letters from the editor, but every time another shelter book dies so does a place for a different point of view and an outlet for talented writers and photographers and designers to celebrate domestic beauty, something I believe passionately in creating and sharing.

I studied interior design full-time for a while, intending to flee journalism, and came away from my studies in awe of the intelligence and drive it takes to create and promote great (even mediocre) design. I’m personally not a fan of the cavernous and relentlessly modern houses Met Home focused on, but many people are — while dozens of shelter books remain safely focused on cozy, pre-digested ideas.

It’s sadly ironic that now we’ve got designer garbage cans and toasters and lighting a mouse-click away, available from even mass marketers like Target or Pottery Barn, we’re losing places like Met Home that salute design’s cutting edge.

At Least No One Can Fire Me

In business, Media on October 29, 2009 at 8:53 am
Forbes Building on Fifth Avenue in New York City

A little emptier than last week/ via Wikipedia

The media massacres continue.

The latest bloodbath is at Forbes, where 100 people are said to be let go.

Earlier this month, Conde Nast shuttered Gourmet and three others; in April, they closed down Portfolio.

Freelancers, some of whom lost staff jobs years ago, watch this parade of pink slips with mixed emotions. For some of us, it’s lost income writing for those magazines. Staffers might be personal friends or former colleagues we care about. And, selfishly, many of them will now be competing for freelance work with us as well. One editor snapped at a colleague of mine recently seeking freelance assignments: “I know many editors who are now out of work!” The line for paid assignments lengthens as the list of available gigs shortens.

The only good news, from the living-room-based desk of this self-employed writer — it’s still mine.

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