Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Barnes & Noble Gets a Time Inc. Vet to Run Its Newsstand

Barnes & Noble wants to catch up to Amazon (AMZN)–and suddenly, Apple (AAPL)–in the e-reader race. This means the company needs its own digital newsstand.

So the bookseller has nabbed a magazine guy to run it. Barnes & Noble (BKS) has hired Jonathan Shar, a 15-year veteran of Time Warner’s (TWX) Time Inc. to lead what it is calling its “Digital Newsstand and Emerging Content, Barnes & Noble.com” unit.

Bad name, good idea. Shar has handled print duties–he ran consumer marketing for Sports Illustrated–and digital for Time Inc. Most recently, he was GM for CNNMoney.com, the publisher’s joint venture with Turner.


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus