[This is part of our special extended team coverage of the American Magazine Conference
, the annual gathering of publishers and editors, October 16-19.]
LAS CROABAS, Puerto Rico – Some themes sustain in the tight-knit and chatty world of consumer magazines, especially at times when everyone's in the same place.
American Magazine Conference chairman Evan Smith, editor of Texas Monthly, touched on two-Jon Stewart and the New Yorker's ethics lapse-during his remarks opening the conference here.
For those who don't know, and there must be one or two of you out there, Jon Stewart excoriated
the magazine industry in general and four prominent editors in particular
during a recent MPA event, and The New Yorker created a minor flap
with an issue in August that was single-sponsored by Target. The retailer ran a series of ads that mimicked New Yorker cartoons, and were never clearly identified as advertising.
Before he got to those two issues, Smith softened up the crowd. “Magazines,” he said, “distinguish themselves with top-notch coverage of natural disasters (before a Time magazine cover of Hurricane Katrina was projected on a screen) and man-made disasters (followed by an Elle cover of a pregnant Britney Spears).”
Then came a recent Wired cover of Stewart with a remote in his mouth. “Actually,” Smith said, “We wanted to put that remote somewhere else.”
Finally, Smith noted how many National Magazine Awards the New Yorker won this year and recalled that he presented the Ellie to New Yorker editor David Remnick. Up flashed an image of Smith and Remnick at the ceremony, with Remnick's face obscured by the familiar red-and-white circular Target logo.
The audience had laughed loudly at the Stewart image. It laughed only nervously at Remnick's.
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