Monday, April 11, 2011

Eye weekly to be repositioned as weekly city magazine The Grid

Bye, bye Eye
Eye weekly, Torstar's urban weekly, is being rebranded and (as anticipated) relaunched as a city magazine. The renewed publication -- now called The Grid -- will be out on May 12, according to a Twitter announcement by publisher and editor-in-chief Laas Turnbull. 
The repositioning more or less sees the publication vacate the alt entertainment newsweekly and listings field in Toronto to its bigger rival NOW. Eye was originally created to compete head-to-head with NOW. Turnbull told Marketing magazine about the strategic thinking behind the change:
The new handle is not some sort of Tron reference, he said. “It’s actually more descriptive than anything. If you look at a map of the city and take out the background and just emphasize all the roadways—North, South, East and West—it looks like a piece of graph paper. So that notion of looking at the city from a street level and a neighbourhood level is very much the direction we’re going editorially,” said Turnbull, who stepped into his role at the Torstar-owned Eye seven months ago.

The name change is part of a move in a radically different direction for the publication, he continued.

Rather than remain an alternative newsweekly heavy in arts, entertainment and listings, The Grid will essentially be a city magazine for people in their 20s and 30s. “So a younger, hipper, more provocative version of Toronto Life in a weekly guise,” he said.

“We’re pretty excited about it because there’s never been a weekly city magazine for young people in Toronto and we think there’s a real appetite for it,” said Turnbull. He added that Torstar has put a lot of resources into the launch.

“There really hasn’t been a big print and online media brand launch in this town for a long, long time. Dose was probably the last thing that would even approach this scale.”



Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Eye weekly, Torstar's urban weekly, is being rebranded and (as anticipated) relaunched as a city magazine."

Uhhh, anticipated by who exactly? We know they were inevitably relaunching but with a new name? Who anticipated this? Pretentiously omniscient people who kept mum on the matter rather than throwing themselves out there with a prediction, I guess. Wow,

6:57 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

here's a prediction...

...they are going to kill showtimes - and push readers to their online site for film listings.

That will allow them to be out on Wednesday Aft. Way before NOW.

I mean if you are a lifestyle magazine rather than an alternative newsweekly heavy in arts, entertainment and listings why bother wasting two pages and holding your entire production schedule hostage so Owen from Markham won't miss Arthur.

Retail advertisers will love it - and the studios and cinemas will still book ads.

3:08 pm  
Blogger D. B. Scott said...

Note to Anonymous #1: anticipated by me, actually, in the post of February 8. But perhaps I'm being pretentious...

3:32 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...they are going to kill showtimes - and push readers to their online site for film listings."

Cineplex et al. have their own "online sites" now.

Just another reason for the change.

4:21 pm  
Anonymous GarBut said...

Certainly anticipated by ME. Turnbull's cover stories have drawn me back to EYE (or, soon, GRID) with a regularity that astonishes me. "Toronto's Biggest Douchebags" last fall, "Decline of the CN Tower" last week -- it's nice to be astonished, not to mention repeatedly.

I am curious about the new name, mind -- why throw out a brand with 20 years of history? Still, I trust everything else this team is doing, so I'm willing to believe the name change will validate itself.

10:33 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon #1 here: Oh dear, I apologize. Who's the pretentious tit now? My hand is up, sir.

9:36 pm  
Anonymous Rona Maynard said...

I'm keen to see how this talented team will rethink the city magazine. Eye has been catching my attention with unexpected story angles that don't repeat conventional wisdom or fit into any of the usual editorial boxes--e.g., the piece on Rob Ford as heir to Jane Jacobs (I was telling friends about that one). Watch out, Toronto Life!

4:44 pm  

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