Can't say I did not warn you last September with an odds of survival rate of 10%.
If you are a Sunday newspaper reader, between the piles and piles of Best Buy brochures and shopping coupon inserts, you may have happened to have found a thin Sunday weekly called Life magazine.
With two stalwarts already stuffed in Sunday papers -- Parade and USA Weekend -- Life was last to the game and never really caught traction. It lost tons of money, which is never good if you are part of Time Inc. nowadays.
Frankly, when you are closing a title, I do not understand why in the same memo, Time Inc. president Ann Moore says: "LIFE enjoyed strong consumer support. Research showed readers
consistently placed it above its competitors in terms of quality edit
and photography." I guess she had to say something nice because "quality edit and photography" doesn't make a business.
So down it goes, one more time, and who knows when it will rear its head again when it's convenient for Time Inc.?
It was a short while ago that the Reaper warned that other Time Inc. titles were potential recipients of a visit from me. Life was one of those magazines, and now the New York Post's Keith Kelly concurs, saying that the weekly insert is losing $35 million a year.
These are bad days for Maxim alumni. Mark Golin's Office Pirates closes, and now Bill Shapiro feels the Reaper over his shoulder. He's got two big reasons to worry:
* In the Jeffrey Bewkes Era, there is no room for massive financial losses, especially if they plan on selling the division at some point. Anne Moore can not afford another albatross on her hands.
* Parade and USA Weekend totally dominate the weekly newspaper insert market. It's already a tough market, as there are so many places to get celebrity and TV news, there is no reason for Life to exist except for pretty photos.
The Reaper does not foresee much life left in Life, and it's best use is in the Museum of Dead Magazines. Again.