Death of a Business Model

October 5, 2009 at 3:02 pm (By Maxwell James)

Ezra Klein notes the passing of an old media icon, Gourmet, first by acknowledging that he’s “been meaning” to get a subscription, then by posting links to some of their best articles and a video from their YouTube channel.


  1. Jason (the commenter) said,

    That is kind of shocking considering all the interest there has been in food over the past few years. There are television channels, reality shows, blogs, and books all devoted to it. But I guess with them, the magazine kind of lost its specialness.

    Of course, I can’t remember any of the food blogs I read ever saying much about Gourmet, so maybe it wasn’t that special after all.

  2. Maxwell said,

    I agree, Jason. I think it’s market space got pretty tightly packed in recent years, and that’s not even considering all the free content out there when it comes to recipes, etc.

  3. amba12 said,

    I fear that my employer, the equally venerable Natural History, is headed the same way, and for all the same reasons.

  4. pathmv said,

    I think we’re going to miss them when they’re gone. I hope some entrepreneurial-minded person archives as much of the know-how and infrastructure of some of the magazines as possible, so that they can be revived down the road.

    Me, I still read (and buy!) lots of magazines. I read them at lunch, I read them at night (while I also watch TV). I get irate at a number of them on occasion (like when Scientific American feels compelled to slip in gratuitous anti-Republican or anti-Bush comments, even now 10 months after he’s left office), but I consider myself much better of with them than without them.

    I get a lot of wood-working magazines lately. I can see them struggling with how to integrate on-line content while maintaining the relevance of the printed copy. One of them just bit the bullet and made full digital copies of the magazine available on-line to all print subscribers. I think we’ll see more and more of that model: sell them as a bundle, and let the consumer decide which one to read.

  5. trooper york said,

    This is only because of Ruth’s bad karma. The work she did destroying so many restaurants with her reviews came back and bit her.

    What goes around comes around.

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