By: Lisa Granatstein
May Issue To Be Last
(Mediaweek) Life magazine, launched in 1936 by Time Inc. founder Henry Luce, is folding
after the May issue.
The 64-year-old chronicler of 20th century events and people has struggled, but never
comfortably found a voice, through the television age, media specialization, and now the
Internet. Once a weekly, Life was folded in 1972, and relaunched as a monthly six years
‘Despite the exceptional efforts of a number of talented publishers and editors, the
publishing formula for a monthly, general interest magazine was just not sustainable,’
Time Inc. chairman/CEO Don Logan and editor in chief Norman Pearlstine said in a joint
The bulk of Life staffers are expected to find work in other Time Inc. titles.
Paid circulation remained flat at 1.6 million in last year’s second half, as subscriptions
fell 5.1% to 1.4 million. Single-copy sales grew by a whopping 41.1%, according to the Audit
Bureau of Circulations.
In the hands of the Time Magazine Group, Life will live on by publishing occasional special
issues and books and will launch a Web-based business, the company said. Life’s subscriber
files will be fulfilled by other Time Inc. magazines.
‘After much thought and discussion, it was decided that this new strategy would be the best
way to maintain the Life brand,’ Logan and Pearlstine said.
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