September 2007 Issue


‘Pay to Play’ OK in the Digital World?

I recently attended the conference for the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE) in New York. In addition to attending the awards banquet, where our columnist Jan White was presented with the ASBPE Lifetime Achievement Award, I went to a few educational sessions. One session, in particular, fueled a fire that has been smoldering in my brain. The session, called “Web Ethics: A Different Ball Game,” examined the separation of church and state in digital publishing. I realized that this is a turning point in publishing history, as editorial standards are being stretched to fit the growing and amorphous digital domain. Many companies

A Fiscal Vigilante

Twenty-eight years ago, Marie Myers settled in at her desk as the new temporary receptionist at Stevens Publishing in Waco, Texas. She was 30 years old and thought she’d give publishing a try. “My sister was in publishing, and I found it interesting,” recalls Myers. Little did she know on that first day of her publishing career that she would work her way up to a top position with a global media company and be inducted into the Publishing Executive Hall of Fame. From Texas to Technology When Myers moved on to a position at Texas Gardener magazine, also in Waco, she began

Building Your List Rental Business

Public or private, consumer or business-to-business, publishing companies of all shapes and sizes are searching for ways to offset shrinking print ad revenues, and rising postal and operational expenses. Sometimes this search opens doors to previously undiscovered riches—as, for example, many publishers are gambling will be the case with their intensified e-media efforts. But a key factor in the profitable publishing model remains the ability to leverage one’s own assets and, these days, building list rental revenue is at the top of many publishers’, well, lists. Few publishers manage their lists in-house anymore, and Hachette Filipacchi Media (HFM) was among the last holdouts to

Consumers Union’s Gold Standard

By Jim Calder There is the kind of loyalty that keeps an employee at a company for a decade or two, maybe even three. And then there is the kind of loyalty that is exemplified by 2007 Hall of Fame inductee Louis Milani. For 53 years, Milani has worked for one company: Consumers Union (CU)—the Yonkers, N.Y.-based nonprofit organization that publishes Consumer Reports magazine (circulation approximately 4.3 million), two newsletters, books and other special-interest publications. Today, Milani is senior director, publishing operations and business affairs, overseeing paper, print, fulfillment and logistics partnerships for CU’s information products, mainly Consumer Reports. And after more than

Gold Ink Awards

The 20th year of the Gold Ink Awards—the industry’s most prestigious print competition—featured some of the storied awards’ most impressive submissions ever. A talented team of judges poured through more than 1,400 entries in this milestone year, awarding Gold, Silver, Bronze and Pewter honors in 47 categories spanning a wide variety of printed products. Printers and publishers submitted their finest pieces, and more than a dozen judges rolled up their sleeves to scrutinize the entries’ each and every detail over four days in May at the Philadelphia headquarters of North American Publishing Co.—parent company of Publishing Executive and Book Business magazines—which hosts the awards.

How to Manage Your Hectic Workload, Not Lose Your Mind and Still Get Home in Time for Dinner

As group production director for Condé Nast Publications, Robin Carter is primarily responsible for the manufacturing of the company’s three golf titles, Golf Digest, Golf World and Golf For Women. She also oversees the production services department at Condé Nast’s Third Avenue office in New York. Carter first joined Condé Nast six years ago, the last three of which have been spent in her current position. Her career in publishing began 24 years ago with a position in finance. “When I became a production finance manager, I knew I found my passion––manufacturing,” she says. What are some of the challenges that production

Is Anyone in Control Here?

How many magazines fit on the head of a pin? Just a silly metaphysical question you say? Perhaps, but that question might have real significance in today’s magazine marketplace—specifically, the newsstand business and the seemingly unlimited amount of opinions and business models that are being discussed, dissected and, if you will pardon the expression, distributed among all the trades, blogs and water coolers of the publishing world. I know you’ve heard the scuttlebutt before—the newsstand model is broken, or the newsstand has been flat for 15 years, or my current favorite, Samir Husni’s July 24 blog entry, “Wholesalers Are Not Dying … They Are Committing

Symbiosis or ‘Death Spiral’?

Printers often demonstrate a genuine interest in the financial well-being of publishers. They prove this every time they hold or cut prices when a postal or paper increase threatens their customers’ profitability. Now, this is not entirely a selfless act on their part. Healthy publishers are essential to the print industry, and after all, we are all in this together. Or are we? It’s common to consider the printer-publisher bond as one of mutual dependence and to note the win-win aspects of what can be called a symbiotic relationship. Each party wants the other to grow and prosper. But what happens to a symbiotic relationship

Weinstein’s Wisdom

Michael Weinstein’s 31-year work history reads like a list of top publishing companies: Macmillan, Pitman Publishing, Addison Wesley, Random House, McGraw-Hill, HarperCollins and Pearson Education, among others. Currently, Weinstein is vice president, EDP (editing, design and production) and manufacturing, at Oxford University Press. Weinstein’s career achievements now are being recognized with his induction into the Publishing Executive Hall of Fame. He is only the second executive from a university press to receive this prestigious award in the Hall of Fame’s 17-year history. The Value of Experience Weinstein attended Lehman College, a branch of the City University of New York. His first

Where the Legends Leave Their Mark

“If you build it, they will come.” This famous quote, borrowed from the classic baseball film “Field of Dreams,” surrounds the inspirational theme of never giving up on your dreams, even when someone tells you they are impossible. And, a more literal interpretation, if you build the right venue, hall-of-fame legends will soon fill it with greatness. Seventeen years ago, North American Publishing Company (NAPCO) tested those philosophies and created a home for legends in the publishing industry, the Publishing Executive Hall of Fame (formerly the PrintMedia Hall of Fame). Each year since, NAPCO has celebrated the careers of a few select individuals who exemplify