Utterly depressing. I generally hated the word “content” anyway because now everything “is content”. There’s no filter. Any idiot with a smartphone can post something and call it “content” - and there’s a never ending deluge of it. I know this is just life now - and more voices having a “platform” is a good thing - but with magazines... call me old fashioned (at 34) but when I was younger I would devour magazines for all the same reasons you mentioned (and buy the same local publications on holiday) for the curated culture, the window into a new world, finding your voice and your tribe. And for knowing this was ultimately the vision of a person I wholeheartedly wanted to be when I grew up: the editor-in-chief. What’s happening to print media makes me deeply sad.
Hey Jo, thanks for your take. Your reminisces about your time as editor of Glamour feel like they're from a bygone era when considering where things are at now. What a shame that, as you say, that rich diversity in publishing across the globe is being further denuded. I feel like here on Substack now we're able to curate for ourselves and enjoy the sorts of writing that I remember devouring magazines for in my 20s and 30s.
Helming Vogue UK is the gig of a lifetime. I can't imagine accepting the job but not being able to call myself its editor. Agree it's so depressing!
Depressing because also women more than ever need something and someone that speaks to individually them rather a homogenous mass globally wanting the same things, the same clothes and opinions. We are not all the same. My perspective is going to very different from a 40 year old woman in Japan. Or Italy. Or Mexico. This feels like an Accountant’s bottom line of the Excel spreadsheet decision. This will lose so much. It’s a shame. I thought EE was making huge strides in pushing against the predictable.
Hi Jo, you may remember me as a contributor to GLAMOUR during your editor days!
Always loved writing for the mag. I just wanted to say in response - I relocated to Tel Aviv a couple of years ago and there are endless jobs here in tech companies with the word content in the titles. And I seem to be allergic to all of these roles! Maybe I’m too traditional, but as I always say to people - I’m a journalist and an editor, I spot trends, interview people, find case studies… there’s a big difference between that and a content writer, who writes UX copy, marketing copy, landing pages etc. I always get mildly offended when people tell me go and work in content for a cloud security start-up or similar. Maybe I’m a snob and need to get over myself, but for me the word content is associated with marketing whereas what we did was journalism. And I think that’s where the problem is (for me). Oh for the glory days of 2004…. 🤩
Mmm. No mention of money. This is surely all about cost saving.
True to the core. I used to buy both the UK and Greece Glamour just for the different "content" in them. Now, I hardly buy any mainstream magazine.
Such a shame magazines are going down this sanitised route. I love buying magazines when I’m on holiday and seeing how the articles and fashion shoots differ from country to country...it gives such an insight into the culture of a place. How boring that everything is being streamlined into one global product.
Absolutely agree. I found it equally depressing when magazine groups ‘hubbed’ the editorial teams of similar interest magazines a few years ago - so the same editorial team is working on and creating ‘content’ for totally different magazines with supposedly entirely separate sets of values/identity/readership.
I completely agree! I tweeted the same thing https://twitter.com/LucyInTheSky22/status/1664926356822532096?t=AUxRBo57TtQD1f4W0YZmjw&s=19
Love love your thoughts on this! ❤️❤️
So, did he jump or was he pushed?
Could not agree more - it’s depressing!
It’s so depressing
I so agree with you Jo. It's sad too see, but the ship has sailed. I just feel lucky to have worked in some incredibly creative places such as Vogue, where the word "content" never crossed any editor's lips
I bloody hate the word 'content'. Content content content. Like it's just meaningless stuff that people churn out to get clicks. 'Content is King' they say...but noone has really worked out how to monetise content...and there's just too much of it that say nothing at all. Great piece Jo xx