Joanne Lipman's Portfolio has not had the impact it hoped on the business conversation, but the unhappy Conde Nast magazine is certainly making a contribution to the journalistic lexicon. When the editor's not in earshot, staffers have been known to deliberately mangle the name of the embattled magazine: referring not to 'Portfolio', but to 'Fort Polio'. If only such wit made it into the magazine. But Portfolio's editor is notorious for shooting down ideas before she understands them.
When pitched a story referencing Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, a journalistic classic, Lipman interrupted: "I don't know it, and I don't like it." That quote has now spread to Fortune, Portfolio's main rival, where her counterpart, Andy Serwer, has taken to using it as an ironic catchphrase, we hear, when he dings a story idea. When Lipman's tenure at Portfolio ends, it should be a consolation that one of her bon mots has made it into the culture.