Publishing/Writing: Insights, News, Intrigue

12/04/2010

U.S News & World Report Abandons ‘print’ Ship!


A venerable old weekly print news mag (it was reduced to monthly in November 2008) is riding off into it’s last sunset (the last issue is this month)…

BUT, the U.S. News & World Report will re-appear in digital clothes with an expanded online edition that will appear 8 times per year and definitly include it’s famous “list” issues…you remember them: the best colleges, hospitals, etc.

Here is a great eulogy delivered by big fan Greg Brown of FOLIO magazine:

Right about now, you should be getting your last printed copy of U.S. News & World Report.

Sad, isn’t it? I grew up a fan of the old weekly. I was reading “Washington Whispers” while most of my high school friends were flipping through ratty comic books or talking about MTV.

I looked down a bit on Newsweek and Time as hopelessly sleepy, middle-of-the-road books. Reading USN&WR was like belonging to a club. An annoying, smarty-pants club. The closest thing to it, probably, was The Economist, and I wouldn’t geek out that much for another few years.

I won’t miss it.

Why? Well, because, frankly, I don’t miss it now. I haven’t subscribed in years. I am part of the problem: They had me young (the marketer’s dream) and now I’m in the thick of my earning years. Yet you won’t find U.S. News in my house. I read a few mags here and there, but not one “newsweekly.”

It’s simple really. If TV has become a form of Internet for the disconnected, then newsweeklies are even further behind the curve. I can’t read newspapers and print anymore. I read way, way too much online, all the time. Nearly anything and everything you care to print and mail to me, I have already seen, absorbed, and likely forgotten.

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11/06/2010

U.S. News & World Report Exiting Print


A sign of the times for many magazines: moving away from print and jumping headlong into digital editions.

Digital has also received a booster shot in the arm by mobile gadgets, the current fad and choice of the “new” avant-garde.

Anyway, I’ve always been a big fan of U.S. News (and their neato “best of” lists) and am glad they will not die an untimely death…as others have.

This report from the staff of U.S. News:

Responding to changing habits in the media marketplace, U.S. News Media Group announced that it will discontinue its subscription-based monthly print magazine, going to newsstand and targeted-distribution print publishing while expanding its array of successful digital products.

In 2011, U.S. News will publish eight newsstand print publications focused on single topics, including its Best Colleges and Best Hospitals rankings franchises. Subscribers to the monthly print magazine will have the remainder of their subscriptions filled by other publications.

“This allows us to continue to grow our online business and position ourselves to take advantage of the emerging platforms for distributing information,” says company president Bill Holiber.

The website, usnews.com, now averages more than 9 million monthly unique visitors. The site emphasizes U.S. News’s traditional strength as a provider of journalism and useful consumer information including a growing range of rankings and research content. In addition to the well-known college and hospital rankings, usnews.com hosts data and tools that allow consumers to evaluate mutual funds, high schools, cars, online education, health plans, and more. A ranking of Best Law Firms launched in September and a travel site based on finding the best vacation options is in the beta phase. Congress Tracker, an extensive data base allowing citizens to examine the records of every member of Congress, is part of an expanding group of public policy tools.

U.S. News Weekly is a digital magazine that debuted in 2009 and is being adapted for iPad and other tablet devices.

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