Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Time Inc. Shrinking Again

Not a good sign for the magazine business: A rough quarter for Time Inc., the world’s biggest magazine publisher.

Revenues dropped 3 percent for the first three months of the year, while operating income shrank by 38 percent.

Corporate parent Time Warner blamed the decline on both slowing ad sales (down 5 percent) and newsstand sales (circulation revenue was down 2 percent).

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes occasionally calls out Time Inc.’s efforts to get its titles onto the iPad and other tablets, and the unit has some digital success stories on the Web. But no one expects Time Inc. to turn into a high-growth business again.

Still, over the last few years it has managed to at least show improvements in its operating profits, as a result of layoffs and corporate restructuring.

Laura Lang, the unit’s newly appointed CEO, is Time Inc.’s third boss in two years. She has her work cut out for her.


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work