One Door Closes and Another Opens
About three days ago now Bauer Media announced that they have made the decision to merge the staff of longstanding, white teeth teen titles Dolly and Cleo.
Anyone who has ever watched any kind of business centred TV show (Suits) knows that mergers are polarising things. People are either all for them or not at all. In the case of this small-scale merger, it seems the majority involved are – rightly – very much against it.
Let us paint a little picture:
Here you are working hard as the Editor in chief of one of Bauer’s highest circulating and well-known titles. A job you’ve tirelessly worked towards your entire life. And there is your friend, working equally as hard as the Editor in chief of Bauer’s other high circulating, well-known title. A job she has tirelessly worked towards her entire life. You both have a great team of staff and everything is peachy.
One day you both arrive at work, super trim latte’s in hand, and are steamrolled by the announcement that your parent company is merging the staff of your two respective titles.
Suddenly you are faced with some harsh truths:
a) No ones job is safe (according to The Australian all staff reportedly have to re-apply for their current jobs)
b) If you do succeed in keeping your position you will be given the task of creating two separate magazines with the staff of one.
This is a truly horrible situation and a pretty wanky typical ‘suit’ move from Bauer. Why not just merge the magazines into one? Granted it would still mean job losses but at least those that stayed would only have the pressure of producing the one title. Evidently Bauer still wants to hold on to the high circulation numbers and profits brought in by both titles, they just want to halve their outgoings, DUH.
The decision also sparked a bit of a debate over whether we should all give up on our magazine dreams. Former editor Mia Freeman tweeted “Sad for all the girls who dream of working in magazines. The dream is sadly very much over. No joy today. Thinking of Dolly & Cleo staff. Maybe she was just caught up in the moment but If we’re honest, “The dream is sadly very much over. No joy today.” is a little overly dramatic. Yes maybe the future of print magazines is a little murky but I certainly don’t think that means those who dream of one day working at Vogue should give up on that.
Maybe it’s just time to adjust to the times? Long live magazines but digital is not the devil.