viernes, julio 25, 2008

Remnick y la década del New Yorker

Justo días antes que apareciera la polémica portada del New Yorker con Obama vestido como un somalí, David Remnick cumplía diez años a la cabeza de la revista más influyente de EE.UU. y probablemente de la tierra. Más allá de la desquiciada reacción de los medios, del propio candidato a la presidencia y de la elite políticamente correcta de ese país, la portada del New Yorker no es otra cosa que el sello que ha impuesto Remnick, incluso sumando errores, como cuando apoyó la invasión de EE.UU. a Irak. Sin embargo, desde que tomó el control de la revista, ésta ha crecido 32%, suma un millón de copias a la semana y mira muy de lejos los números rojos que la acompañaron por mucho tiempo. De hecho, no fue hasta el 2000 que Conde Nast (que compró el New Yorker en 1985) pudo ver cifras aceptables. Pero Remnick logró algo más interesante: cautivar a jóvenes lectores. La revista ha aumentado en un 24% del número de lectores entre los 18-24 años y en un 52% entre los 25-34 años. Remnick, quien ganó el premio Pulitzer en 1994 con el libro Lenin’s Tomb, tiene al New Yorker encumbrado, después de 89 años, en uno de los puntos más altos de su historia. La siguiente es una entrevista de Financial Times a David Remnick.

Por Trevor Butterworth

“We can’t live without the goose prosciutto,” says David Remnick, with all the avidity of a malnourished gourmand. He is 6ft 1in, approaching 50 and lean for a journalist known to be something of a foodie. He has suggested we meet at Esca, an Italian restaurant in midtown Manhattan, whose name means “bait” and whose allure, it seems, is not just its food. Its fish-obsessed chef David Pasternack was the subject of a profile in 2005 in The New Yorker, the magazine where Remnick will this week celebrate his 10th anniversary as editor.

Goose or death might not seem much of a choice but, after hearing that the meat is merely shaved into a salad, Remnick decides his path to salvation is through the verdura mista , followed by soft shell crab done two ways and an iced tea. I keep faith with the goose and also order black cod along with a glass of Prosecco.

Remnick has much to celebrate after 10 years: circulation of The New Yorker has risen by 32 per cent, to more than 1m copies a week; re-subscription rates, at 85 per cent, are the highest in the industry; and despite the conventional wisdom that young readers don’t have the attention span to do more than blog, text and twitter, the magazine has seen its 18-to-24 readership grow by 24 per cent and its 25-to-34 readership rise 52 per cent. Twenty-four of its 47 National Magazine Awards were awarded under Remnick’s tenure. Perhaps most reassuring of all, The New Yorker’s balance sheet has moved from red to black – although its private ownership precludes him from revealing how much profit it makes.

It is hard to recall how desperate things seemed a decade ago when, after six years as the magazine’s editor, Tina Brown abruptly left to start the ill-fated Talk magazine. If it had infuriated many in Manhattan that Brown, who is British, had been brought in to rebrand The New Yorker and make it more advertiser-friendly, then her departure was also greeted as an augury of doom. Fortune magazine estimated that by 1998 losses at the magazine amounted to $175m, making The New Yorker “one of the greatest money pits in American magazine history”.

Remnick came to the task with no editorial experience. After graduating summa cum laude in Comparative Literature from Princeton in 1981, he joined The Washington Post, working his way from the late-night police beat through the sports desk to the paper’s Moscow bureau in 1988, where history – “dumb luck”, as he puts it – gave him the opportunity to shine and, ultimately, win a Pulitzer in 1994 for Lenin’s Tomb, his book on the fall of the Soviet Union. Even before that accolade, his reputation had made him one of Brown’s first hires after she joined the magazine in 1992.


Remnick came to the task with no editorial experience. After graduating summa cum laude in Comparative Literature from Princeton in 1981, he joined The Washington Post, working his way from the late-night police beat through the sports desk to the paper’s Moscow bureau in 1988, where history – “dumb luck”, as he puts it – gave him the opportunity to shine and, ultimately, win a Pulitzer in 1994 for Lenin’s Tomb, his book on the fall of the Soviet Union. Even before that accolade, his reputation had made him one of Brown’s first hires after she joined the magazine in 1992.

2 Comentarios:

Anonymous Anónimo dijo...

Ese episodio del Daily show es francamente notable. Es una lástima que Jon Stewart no halla sido tan brillante en la ceremonia de los oscar, pero la burla que hace a la sobrereacción de los medios por la portada del New Yorker es increíblemente divertida.

saludos Andrés!

Miguel Patiño

2:25 p. m.  
Blogger Newsoft Systems dijo...

La ilustración de burros y elefantes es muy interesante. Representa totalmente a la sociedad norteamericana, con un lado inteligente y otro paranoico, el cual predomina tanto en republicanos como democratas.

Ojala que con el cambio democrata que viene se frene un poco ese temor que tienen los norteamericanos.

Newsoft Systems

4:54 p. m.  

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