The Future of Alt-Weeklies Is No More Alt-Weeklies

In your throwback Wednesday media column: alt-weeklies get glossy, and remain sexy, Malcolm Gladwell was one of those "I don't have a TV" kids, and Sarah Palin's zinger on Katie Couric.

  • The "we are obligated by custom to describe it as 'venerable'" alt-weekly The Chicago Reader is now a magazine. As in, it has redesigned itself and "will be bound by staples and feature a glossy cover." In order to feel "less disposable." This seems somehow sacrilegious, although I can't really articulate a good reason why. Alt-weeklies do not have glossy covers! That's not their thing. Ah well. I guess going out of business is not their thing either. So if this helps to avoid that, we'll grudgingly accept it. They better never take out the "massage" ads, though.
  • Guess what, Village Voice Media is still selling lots of hooker ads on its Backpage.com website. "When Craigslist shuttered its 'Adult Services' section last year, no one was naïve enough to think the move would mean the end of prostitution, but did anyone predict it could save alt-weeklies?" Yes, everyone.
  • Malcolm Gladwell barely ever reads news on the internet at all."I fear that I'm on the extreme low end of media consumption. I think that this is because I grew up in a family that didn't get a daily newspaper, didn't have a television, and never went to the movies." Oh. Yeah. Of course. God, this guy.
  • Did Sarah Palin have a semi-intelligible joke about TelePrompTers to make on the occasion of Katie Couric announcing her departure from CBS News? She sure did. Whew.
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