My answer

My answer: David Carr asks in today’s NY Times, “What is up with all the personal pronouns (in the names of magazines)? What is next? We the People? Your Magazine? I Weekly?

It’s not often that I can personally answer David, but as I (when not blogging) am (among other things) the editor and publisher of the 550,000-circulation magazine pictured, MyBusiness, I know about the topic. First, it was named five years ago (so much for the “recent trend” theory) and I came up with it, so I know it wasn’t the result any expensive research except me listening to hundreds of our readers talk about their work.

Was the name influenced by the Internet, as suggested in the article today. No, it was suggested by how small business owners and the people who work with them use the term “my business” as a term of pride, a term of ownership and a term of unique personal knowledge. On a related note, it is my opinion that the use of the second-person pronouns “You” or “Your” in the name of a magazine makes no sense as it clearly communicates to the reader that the publisher is the “we” and the reader is the “you,” which is the exact opposite of what I think is key to the success of any magazine.

Speaking of my business, I just noticed that today is the 13th anniversary of the start of my business. Wow. It doesn’t seem that long. No, wait. On second thought, it does.

rexblog bumper music: My Ding-A-Ling (Chuck Berry)

  • Bill

    This reminded me of a ‘study’ I read about a few years back where somebody observed how the changing titles of magazines reflected the changing interpersonal attitudes of Americans. As I remember, the author noted that in the ’40s and ’50 we had ‘Life’, ‘Look’, ‘Saturday Evening Post’ kind of a whole world view, this evolved through succeeding decades to ‘People’ and ‘Us’ and the like (please,this is from memory)to titles like ‘Self’. Much more self-centered as we go along. Does anyone know about this ‘study’ and where I can find more information on it? Thanks.