A Criticism Of the Adverstisements in the Time Edition of February 22nd, 2010

I subscribe to Time and when I got the new issue yesterday I read through it. Than near the end I saw an advertisement for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. Now I usually roll my eyes when people speak of the moral or cultural degneracy of America and/or the West. But this is really telling. The fact that such an ad that shows a woman in revealing costume (obviously to appeal to sexual desire) should be in a periodical ostenibly for the educated (or those who aspire to be educated) portion of the populace is beyond me. Did Time’s founder the great Henry Luce want that or is he rolling in the grave that his great news periodical should have that sort of advertisement fit for a billboard in a slum district or an automotive magazine? Of course the content of books, periodicals, and television programs (outside of PBS) has generally been dumbing down over the years-even school textbooks.

Yeah, they should only be advertising a collection of the best nudes in classical art i’d buy it

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Well there’s your problem right there. *Time *hasn’t been a “great news periodical” for decades (if ever). It’s about one step up from People.

What would you recommand than?

Time and Sports Illustrated were both created by Henry Luce. SI was founded in 1954 and didn’t become profitable until 1966, two years after the first Swimsuit issue. Luce himself stepped down from the editor position at both mags in '65. The swimsuit issue has always been risque - it was the first mag to popularize the bikini, which was a boundary-pushing outfit at the time. But it makes money and advertising it in its sister publication is just smart business.

So no, I’m guessing Luce is sleeping comfortably, right about now.

The Economist if you have the time. The Week if you want the short form.

The week that the US Ambassador to Lebanon was killed, Time’s cover story was “Ice Cream, Getting your Licks In.” Haven’t read it since.

Luce? Darn near caused WW3 over Taiwan if all things.

The Economist is far better than Time.

http://economist.com

There is a lot of content available for free online, but the print version is still worth it.

http://www.foreignaffairs.com/topics I would recommend “Foreign Affairs”.

I am a fan of Foreign Affairs too.

And Curtis, obviously you are too young to remember the National Geographic swimsuit issue. Now there was travesty.

They put bras on the naked natives?

Sometimes Time does have fairly good content-like the Robert Gates article last week, plus unlike most periodicals it’s weekly so more up-to-date news.

The Economist is also a weekly, and is about as up-to-date IME.

I agree that women in bikinis are a sign of moral degeneracy. They should be nude, celebrating the natural beauty of the human form.

It is not February 22 yet?

Has anyone mentioned the Economist yet? If they have, here’s another vote.
As for Time and grave-spinning, my Corporations professor told a great story about Time. It used to be a very reputable and content-packed magazine, on par with the reputation the Economist has now. But then there was the merger/buyout/somethingorother between Time and Warner. Promises were made regarding the editorial content of Time and how it would be run, but those promises weren’t kept. A lawsuit (or a series of lawsuits) was filed, but as evidenced by the relatively threadbare condition of Time’s journalistic content the lawsuits weren’t successful.

Unfortunately, it’s been five or six years since the lecture and I have no details to share other than that. If anyone recognizes anything and can correct me where I went wrong (even if it’s the titles involved!) or can point me to an article or description of the above, that would be great.

Absolute nonsense in almost every conceivable way.

Time started as a condensation of the news, more like a combination of Reader’s Digest and The Week. For some reason it hit a niche in American culture. It made Luce very rich, but was almost always scorned and mocked by anybody with serious pretensions because of its weird backward Timestyle of writing. (Editors completely rewrote reporters’ stories to fit into the style, and little things like facts or context often got left behind.) Wolcott Gibbs wrote his New Yorker profile of Luce entirely in Timestyle. That’s the profile that said things like “Backward ran sentences until reeled the mind.” and ended, “Where it will all end, knows God.” It’s an utterly brilliant takedown, though nobody remembers anything other than those two sentences today.

Luce also started Fortune, which did provide excellent coverage of business, and Life, the picture magazine that was the true source of the Time-Life (as it was once known) empire. Life was infinitely more important than Time as a magazine and cultural touchstone. Life photographers had the power to do anything because everyone wanted to cooperate with them.

Time did do a high level job of reporting during WWII. Unfortunately, Luce - who had been born the son of missionaries in China - went into total support of the Nationalist government after the war, and bought into right-wing paranoia, driving away the very reporters who made the magazine’s reputation during the war. For the rest of the 50s Time was the establishment’s magazine and a reliable source of news in the way that Fox News is today. Newsweek, a poor sister of Time since the 30s, had been bought by the Washington Post. It made its move in the 60s and started cleaning Time’s clock.

Time and Newsweek have battled more or less even since as magazines, but Time always had huger resources behind it. (I don’t doubt in the least that the TimeWarner-AOL fiasco hurt the magazine, but there was no great fall. It had noplace to fall from.) They’re both popular magazines and that means catering to public whims, fads, and interests. The covers of both magazines serve only one real purpose - to drive newsstand buyers. Since there aren’t 8 people in the country who cared about US Ambassador to Lebanon being killed, no sane editor would put that on the cover. I bet The Economist didn’t either.

Both mags are dying and for the same reason. People don’t need general interest magazines any more. They can get more and better specifics about news, entertainment, health, and other topics from other sources that concentrate entirely on one particular niche.

The Economist is more of a pure news magazine so it fits that niche better. But it’s not really a competitor. It averages maybe 700,000 circulation in the U.S. and Time is still easily five times that amount.

As for ads for women in bikinis being a sign of decadence, I’m afraid that’s a laughable notion. Curtis, when you get several years older you should see the x-rated version of the movie Caligula. That’s the best depiction of decadence in popular culture. You will never confuse bikinis and decadence again.

Absolute nonsense in almost every conceivable way.

Time started as a condensation of the news, more like a combination of Reader’s Digest and The Week. For some reason it hit a niche in American culture. It made Luce very rich, but was almost always scorned and mocked by anybody with serious pretensions because of its weird backward Timestyle of writing. (Editors completely rewrote reporters’ stories to fit into the style, and little things like facts or context often got left behind.) Wolcott Gibbs wrote his New Yorker profile of Luce entirely in Timestyle. That’s the profile that said things like “Backward ran sentences until reeled the mind.” and ended, “Where it will all end, knows God.” It’s an utterly brilliant takedown, though nobody remembers anything other than those two sentences today.

Luce also started Fortune, which did provide excellent coverage of business, and Life, the picture magazine that was the true source of the Time-Life (as it was once known) empire. Life was infinitely more important than Time as a magazine and cultural touchstone. Life photographers had the power to do anything because everyone wanted to cooperate with them.

Time did do a high level job of reporting during WWII. Unfortunately, Luce - who had been born the son of missionaries in China - went into total support of the Nationalist government after the war, and bought into right-wing paranoia, driving away the very reporters who made the magazine’s reputation during the war. For the rest of the 50s Time was the establishment’s magazine and a reliable source of news in the way that Fox News is today. Newsweek, a poor sister of Time since the 30s, had been bought by the Washington Post. It made its move in the 60s and started cleaning Time’s clock. (Newsweek was slightly more liberal than Time. But that wasn’t the reason that it was called liberal. All the major news sources made conscious decisions to try to be more objective and less overtly tied to a particular party or ideology. Even since right-wing commentators have gone by the rule that it you’re not overtly for us, you are our enemies. Neutral news - the first time in the nation’s history that an attempt at neutral news ever existed - became demonized as the liberal media. This is now believed by almost everyone, proving that propaganda does indeed work if you repeat it long enough.)
Time and Newsweek have battled more or less even since as magazines, but Time always had huger resources behind it. (I don’t doubt in the least that the TimeWarner-AOL fiasco hurt the magazine, but there was no great fall. It had noplace to fall from.) They’re both popular magazines and that means catering to public whims, fads, and interests. The covers of both magazines serve only one real purpose - to drive newsstand buyers. Since there aren’t 8 people in the country who cared about US Ambassador to Lebanon being killed, no sane editor would put that on the cover. I bet The Economist didn’t either.

Both mags are dying and for the same reason. People don’t need general interest magazines any more. They can get more and better specifics about news, entertainment, health, and other topics from other sources that concentrate entirely on one particular niche.

The Economist is more of a pure news magazine so it fits that niche better. But it’s not really a competitor. It averages maybe 700,000 circulation in the U.S. and Time is still easily five times that amount.

As for ads for women in bikinis being a sign of decadence, I’m afraid that’s a laughable notion. Curtis, when you get several years older you should see the x-rated version of the movie Caligula. That’s the best depiction of decadence in popular culture. You will never confuse bikinis and decadence again.

I thought the first one didn’t post. Odd.

Time has always been resolutely middle-brow. Nothing wrong with that–I enjoyed it as a kid. (Which was many years ago.)

Gosh, it ran an ad for a sister publication! Specifically, the famous annual issue that features scantily clad young women! I’m shocked, shocked!

(Pray you don’t happen upon a Victoria’s Secret catalog.)

Double the nonsense!

Like I said, it was several years ago and the gist of the story was corporate law not journalism. While I’m pretty sure it was Time/Warner I could be wrong about that too. Certainly sounds as if you’re saying Time was never a respected publication.