For the common good, don’t

For the common good, stop now: Those who commit every word of this blog to memory may recall that on May 30th, I pointed to a story (that’s now a dead link) about plans for a new “George-like” magazine called Common Good. “I doubt it can succeed,” was my take then. Well, it’s still my take. Helen O’Donnell has discovered that not only can she not raise the $25 million she thinks in necessary to launch it, she’s having trouble scraping together a measly $10 million. Man, times are tough when you can’t raise $10 million to launch a magazine that will lose money forever.

Plenty of reading time


Something free for Martha? Felix Dennis, publisher of, well, you should know by now, also publishes The Week. One thing for sure, Dennis is a master promoter. Keith Kelly reports in his NY Post column that Dennis is building a list of “affluent” white-collar criminals to whom the magazine will be sent free. The list is up to 55 names but may grow higher when all the Enron folks get sent up the river. [subscribe to The Week]

Magazine names

A magazine by any other name: Jeff Bercovici of explores the art of naming a magazine. I’ve had the opportunity to participate in the naming of dozens of magazines and in the process have come to realize that a good name can’t save a lousy magazine but a lousy name can kill a good one. (By the way, that’s the slogan of a new magazine I’m starting, Cliché.) Kudos to Jeff for making it all the way through a story about new magazines without quoting, well, you know.