“Badly motivated” magazines are dying off, Gabriel Sherman writes, meaning publications created to capture a sudden and temporary flurry of ad dollars in a specific category (such as shelter publications launched during the housing bubble or niche lifestyle magazines introduced during the age of the hedge funder). Magazines that “can speak directly to the reader,” that “harbor deep connections” with readers, will, according to Sherman, survive. Sherman acknowledges exceptions to his rule such as Domino, which ceased publication earlier this year, even though “its knowing-but-friendly approach to home design gave readers the sense that the magazine was created expressly for them and not to service ad buyers.”
Ad Age counts, since last March, twenty-six magazines that are no longer in print.
Liz Cox Barrett is a freelance writer and graphic designer in Kalispell, Montana. She worked as a newspaper journalist in Denver and Kalispell for 20 years.