Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Departing Masthead editor says Maclean's has become Canada's most interesting magazine

In what is essentially his swan song as editor of Mastheadonline (he leaves his post on Friday 4th to go to teacher's college), Marco Ursi has written a hymn of praise to Maclean's magazine and its publisher/editor Ken Whyte. His occasional "From the Editor's Desk" column says Maclean's has become Canada's most interesting magazine and points out that Whyte-driven covers have built up weekly single copy sales of the magazine by about 53%, even in the face of a cover price increase of $1.34.
As every smart circulator will tell you, readers do judge magazines by their covers. Once the purchase has been made, though, it’s what’s inside that counts. And though it’s not a perfect magazine, what Maclean’s does well, it does really well.
In Ursi's view, Maclean's has created an Ottawa bureau that is the best in the country and its arts and life coverage "is superior to what any of the country's daily newspapers offer". And he praises the "strong, distinct voice" that Whyte has nurtured throughout the book.

Interestingly, Ursi puts his money where his mouth is. When Maclean's stopped sending him comp copies, he went out and bought a subscription. Which, for any editor, is perhaps the highest praise of all.

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We wish Marco all the best in his new life and hope that he won't be a total stranger to the magazine business. He's brought a lot of passion and energy to Masthead and kept a good grace through the difficult closure of the print edition and its transition to an online magazine. The kids he'll teach will be lucky to have him.

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