Media journalist Erik Sass finds PlanetOut’s publishing sale “embarrassing:” “In an embarrassing setback, PlanetOut Inc., a leading LGBTmedia company, is selling its magazine business for a song… Having purchased [Out and The Advocate] and erotic book business of Liberation Publications for $32.1 million in November 2004, on Thursday PlanetOut announced it is selling the magazines to Here Networks, a gay and lesbian-themed TV network, for a paltry $6 million.” [MediaPost]
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PlanetOut isn’t selling the mags, it’s giving them away.
As reported in the San Francisco Business Journal:
“The price in the letter of agreement is $6 million, with $1 million coming on April 30 or sooner, if the agreement is finished earlier. Other $1 million payments will be made on the 15th of the month from May through September.
The letter, signed by PlanetOut CEO Karen Magee and Regent CEO Paul Colichman states: “The funds shall be treated as prepaid advertising, to be applied as the marketing occurs.” The ads must run by March 31, 2009.”
Soooooo, Regent agreed to buy $6 million in advertising on gay.com over the next year, and as a bonus, PlanetOut is throwing in Out, The Advocate, and the book business FOR FREE.
Talk about value added.
Sass also points out that Out/Advocate subscribers are down and the more “racier” pubs like Genre and Instinct are gaining ground. Racier or not, congrats to Genre and Instinct! I’ve always been a supporter and reader of Instinct “gay fluff” and hope they continue to grow. Advertisers would be smart to move their ad dollars to pubs that actually have some stability and loyal subscribers.
Ha Ha. So, lifetime television is buying Project runway for 1 million dollars per episode. Out and Advocate together are only worth 6 episodes of project runway? That’s pretty sad.
hells kitchen guy
Instinct and Genre are “growing” because of their liberal subscription policies (that is, sign up for a free magazine). They don’t seem to have heavier ad pages, and they’re not getting many national brands. I can’t believe those tiny underwear companies pay rate card.
Out and Advocate give away free subscriptions to everyone that is on gay.com! Now that’s a “liberal” subscription policy!
But I do agree that Genre seems to becoming racier each month, with their advertisers following suit.
Instinct on the other hand, to me, just gets better each month. Top notch advertising and really interesting/fun articles. Where can I sign up for a free magazine, cause I’ve never seen this with Instinct?
There is nothing wrong with free magazine subscriptions. Its how many magazines build their audience. Many of the free subscriptions eventually become paid subscribers. If we are to keep comparing Out/Advocate–most subscribers of each magazine get BOTH Out and Advicate so there is major duplication. It would be stupid to advertise in both. PLUS Out Traveler is now free anyway if you subscribe to Out. Silly. Anyway, magazine are BUNK and online is where it’s at and going to be!
Print More Trusted Source of Information Than Internet
MediaVest Study: Consumers Cite Health as the One Area Web Rules
By Nat Ives
Published: March 28, 2008
NEW YORK (AdAge.com) — Reinforcing print publishers’ frequent assertions of relationships with readers, new research by MediaVest suggests that readers trust print more than the web in almost every area.
People are seven times more likely to turn to print publications like Vogue for fashion and beauty content, according to new research from MediaVest.
Print’s fashion and beauty coverage took the trust prize by the widest margin, outstripping readers who trust websites more by 24%, according to the study of 1,500 adults 18 to 54, which was complemented by analysis based on a Mediamark Research database. People are seven times more likely to turn to print for fashion and beauty content, the research found.
Print coverage of food and cooking was more trusted by a 7% margin; print entertainment news was more trusted by 5%.
“Print offers something very, very unique, specifically around trustworthiness and authoritativeness,” said David Shiffman, senior VP-connections research and analytics at MediaVest. “The personal experience people have with it is very different from what they’re looking for and getting in the digital world.”
The web beat print for trustworthiness in one area: health and wellness, where readers preferred digital sources such as WebMD by 3%.
“The research is going to help publishers develop and steer their content in the appropriate direction,” said Robin Steinberg, senior VP-director of print investment at MediaVest. “When most magazines first launched their sites, they didn’t have the correct approach of utility, immediacy and customization. They were basically taking content from the magazine and putting it online. Research such as this helps publishers to create online environments and experiences that align with user expectations of the online world vs. the offline or in-book.”
The MediaVest study also found:
There remains very low duplication between the audiences for print publications and their online companions. Duplication ranged from 1% to 6% for every category except entertainment, where some titles reached duplication rates of 10%.
Print titles should deliver something different with their online extensions, according to 79% of respondents who were dual magazine and digital users. But only 44% said they strongly believed that publishers’ sites really offer something unique.
Print will never die. Only 12% of respondents said they strongly believed that a publisher’s site could easily replace the print product within the next five years.
Hells kitchen guy
I only like bear magazines that speak to my demographic.
@ Hells Kitchen Guy:
Oh. My. Gawd! You’re not only snarky, funnny, incisive and savvy (I know because I read your posts on all the blogs), but you’re also a bear?
I am SOOOO in love!
No self-respecting gay person would even wipe their ass with those magazines and looking at the website make me yearn for straightness….6 mil ? they got REAMED! I say 3 bucks tops.
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