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The New Republic is one of America’s oldest and most progressive political and literary magazines.
In 1914, while World War I raged in Europe, two American journalists, Herbert Croly and Walter Lippmann, printed the first edition of their weekly political magazine, The New Republic. It was backed by a wealthy American heiress and her husband. From its earliest days, the magazine was meant to be an exploration of American liberalism, a role it has played continuously since its first printing, despite manifold changes to the magazine’s structure, operation, management and format.
Throughout much of recent history, the magazine was owned by Martin Peretz, a Harvard lecturer, who bought it in 1974 for $380,000. Over the decades, the magazine’s reputation as a prestigious and intellectual, if sometimes politically controversial, publication continued to grow. With Leon Wieseltier at the helm, the magazine added a substantial book review in 1980.
The New Republic’s print edition claims a modest circulation of around 42,000. They publicize that their median reader, “is 51, with a household income of nearly $100,000 and over half have graduate degrees.” The magazine was widely understood to rely on the generosity of wealthy donors.
In the early 90s, the magazine suffered a scandal when it was discovered that multiple staff writers had plagiarized quotes and fabricated facts in their writing. In 2007, Peretz sold the magazine to CanWest Global Communications, but then, along with a group of investors, bought it back in 2009. In 2012, Chris Hughes, one of Facebook’s founding members, used his earnings to buy the magazine and launch a digital reinvention of the publication, of which he is now publisher and editor-in-chief. Hughes first removed and then slowly reinstituted a paywall over the magazine’s digital content, and claimed, at its launch, that he planned for it to be profitable within two years. It launched a vertical dedicated to domestic politics and policy called Q.E.D. in 2014.
Today, the magazine is based out of Washington, DC, with a staff of over 50, including 32 remote contributing editors. Franklin Foer is the magazine’s editor, and Leon Wieseltier continues to act as literary editor. The magazine holds regular events and draws some ad revenue, and continues to circulate a bimonthly print edition.
The Zonie Report was a local online news site that covered the state of Arizona. The Report ran from 2006 to March 2010, when its founder and editor, Adam Klawonn, shut it down to focus on his work at Phoenix magazine and a mobile light-rail publication called CityCircles. The Report lost money and had a…