Dead or Alive ?

When it comes to print media, the popular assumption is that its dead, just around and you will hear people say things like digital killed print, print is dead or at best dying.

Not Hearst Magazine’s president David Carey.

In 2017 we have seen many digital publishers seem to be struggling, selling, or soliciting, whether it’s the media company IAC exploring offers to offload The Daily Beast, Fusion Media Group offering a minority stake in The Onion and former Gawker Media sites, or Mashable selling for a fifth of its former valuation.

So many media companies in 2017 have reoriented their budgets around the production of videos that the so-called “pivot to video” has become an industry joke. Today, the pivot seems less like a business strategy and more like end-of-life estate planning.


On the Peter Kafka podcast, Recode Media, Carey recalled the famous scene from the 1995 movie, Toy Story. “Buzz says he’s going to fly and Woody says, ‘No Buzz, that’s not flying, that’s falling with style.” Carey continues, “I think some of these companies that have lost a huge amount of money, by going back to their investors, have been falling with style.”

Hearst which owns over 20 magazine brands including elle, Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar and esquire backs up their counter digital statement with confidence, claiming that  2/3rds of their profits still come from the print mediums of their business. He feels that if solely digital companies will make it, on any kind of level, they will need at least 25% of their profits coming from live events, new data and e-commerce on their site.

Thanks to the ad support from larger brands advertising with Hearst Magazine, Carey feels confident in the power of print media publishing.