A question of content



Robbie just pointed me to Baby! magazine with a nod to their layout and type. I have to agree that the design is nice – in a very plain and restrained manner – but am not sure that they really achieved their goal of “surpassing standard expectations of art, style and fashion magazines”.

Although the magazine seems to have folded – the last issue was Autumn 2004 so I am aware that I am commenting on something that cannot be measured by the state of affairs in 2007 – it’s a good opportunity for me to feed you a bit of advice about the magazine redesign you may do in 3rd year. You need to keep in mind what relevance a printed magazine has in today’s digital age.

The thing about printed magazines is that they have a long turnaround time. Articles that may have appeared to be “ novel and eccentric, quirky and quintessential” (to quote from the Baby! site) one week, will probably be old hat once the magazine is printed. New magazines should be aware of the way that the internet has sped up the global spread of information and adjust their content accordingly. To remain relevant in today’s publishing mix, magazines need to present more intelligent comment and in-depth analysis, not just a rapid-reading collection of the “eccentric, quirky and quintessential”. If I want that, I’ll just go read a blog.


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