Archive for Sunday, May 20, 2001

Gadfly’ magazine switches from print to Internet publication

May 20, 2001


These days, you need a scorecard to track the magazine industry's permutations in a windless advertising climate.

Some have announced cutbacks in publishing schedules, e.g. The Atlantic Monthly, which will publish one fewer issue this year. Magazines that touted the once-fat "new economy" are dieting. In September, Brill's Content magazine, which had been published 10 times a year, will become a quarterly.

Declining ad revenues and an overstuffed magazine market are to blame for a lot of this. But some magazines are looking at the situation as an opportunity.

Gadfly, the award-winning cultural magazine, falls into that category. Beginning this month, Gadfly will go from a bimonthly publication to an online-only daily magazine.

John W. Whitehead, editor of Gadfly, said it's unusual to switch from print to Internet, but magazines are having a tough time. Gadfly, he said, was expensive to print. Its print circulation was only 10,000.

"One big decision for us was that the Gadfly Web site was getting 200,000 hits a month," he said. "For magazines that print really hard content, the Web's probably a way to go. It's cheaper, you can print more writers and you can be very current. That's the key."

Whitehead said the Gadfly site will offer everything the magazine did, but on a daily basis. Mondays, for example, will be issues day; Tuesdays will be devoted to music and reviews; Wednesdays will feature art and photography; Thursdays will focus on literature and book reviews; and Fridays will survey movies, DVD, video and theater.

Recent offerings include several stories about the Beatles; a celebration of Gary Cooper's centennial birthday ; and a Cannes daily diary.

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