Newsweek is the latest media outlet to exploit that hot emotional trend known as “Condéfreude” — you know, the satisfaction or pleasure felt at Conde Nast‘s misfortune? One expects this sort of coverage from guilty pleasure sites like Gawker and Jezebel, but Newsweek? Really? Need anyone remind the editorial staff at the struggling weekly that they themselves reported first quarter losses this year of over $20 Million?
Johnnie L. Roberts writes:
After months of speculation, the carnage came to Conde Nast earlier this week. The company, one of the nation’s three biggest magazine publishers, announced it would close four magazines, including Gourmet, one of the industry’s most iconic publications.
A NEWSWEEK analysis of industry data provides new evidence of the financial toll that drove that decision: based on estimates of publishing data, Conde Nast could see its ad revenue drop by $1 billion in 2009.
Through August, ad dollars already have plunged by about $600 million from the similar eight-month period in 2008 when revenues also were depressed. Of Conde Nast’s two dozen magazines, among them some of publishing’s glossiest titles, all suffered declines, most stretching into double-digit drops.
Newsweek‘s first quarter losses equates to roughly $80 Million in annual losses for one title. Until this week Condé Nast had two dozen titles, which if Newsweek’s $1 billion dollar estimate is correct, rounds out to roughly $43 million in annual losses per title.
So can one surmise that Condé Nast titles have, on average at least, had a better year than Newsweek? Probably not. Though one is reminded of the lesson of glass houses and throwing stones.
A request for information sent to Newsweek has not yet been returned.
Update – A Newsweek spokesperson tells Mediaite that the news weekly fared much better in the second quarter, showing only a loss of $5 million loss.
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