Media

Jamie Salter Buying Sports Illustrated?

by The Editors on April 30, 2019

In the continuing saga of strange zombie brand shenanigans, it is being reported that Authentic Brands, the company that just purchased Volcom is very seriously considering purchasing Sports Illustrated, the fading print magazine known most widely for it’s annual bikini issue, for $110 million, according to a story on Pitchbook.com.

If Authentic Brands ultimately wins the auction, it would keep SI’s print product alive for at least another two years, per retail-focused website WWD. But its bigger play would be licensing SI’s brand, which could reportedly include launching kids’ sports camps and injury rehab clinics. That sort of cross promotion is what Authentic Brands has specialized in while building consumer brands for celebrities such as retired NBA star Shaquille O’Neil and ex-pro golfer Greg Norman. Here’s to hoping this strategy could produce a viable business model to preserve SI’s journalistic aspirations. 

ABG has enough women’s wear brands to pack that bikini issue, and when you look at print advertising costs, it may be cheaper to just buy the magazine. We’ve said it as a joke before, but it’s looking more and more like Jamie Salter really will own everything soon.

[Link: Pitchbook]

{ 0 comments }

Surfer Magazine Parent Sells National Enquirer

by The Editors on April 18, 2019

American Media LLC, the company that purchased a gutted Adventure Sports Network in January 2019 has apparently sold the National Enquirer (and a couple other tabloids) to Hudson Media. for $100 million, according to a story on WWD.

James Cohen, part of the family that founded Hudson News Distributors, is buying the U.S. and U.K versions of the gossip magazine from David Pecker’s American Media LLC (recently renamed from American Media Inc.), which acquired the title 20 years ago. The $100 million deal also includes two other tabloids, Globe and National Examiner. . . Pecker — whose friendship with President Donald Trump and the use of the Enquirer’s coverage to aid Trump’s candidacy and perhaps even his personal vendettas has come under intense scrutinyover the last year — wrote in a statement that the group of magazines actually pull in $30 million in profit annually.

Not sure what this really means other than Snowboarder, Skateboarding, and Surfer Magazine are no longer siblings of the politically embroiled gossip rags and AMI is a little less in debt — only $355 million now. Ouch.

[Link: WWD]

{ 0 comments }

Apple’s News+ App Includes Surfer Magazine

by The Editors on March 26, 2019

In a keynote address yesterday (March 25, 2019), Apple’s Tim Cook mentioned that their newly launched News+ app is like having an “entire newsstand on your iPhone,” but for us, not so much. First, as we’ve been saying lately there aren’t many surf, snow, or skate magazines left, and second, the only one that made it onto the Apple app is Surfer Magazine. The new “Netflix for magazines” app charges users $9.99 a month for unlimited magazine viewing from at least 300 different magazine titles.

For the olds who enjoy reading The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, The Week, and Surfer, this new subscription model might not be terrible, but spending $120 a year for magazines that can only be read on iPhones, iPads, or Apple computers, doesn’t seem like the best deal when a Surfer Magazine subscription can be purchased online for $14. For more info on Apple News+ please click the link.

[Link: News+]

{ 0 comments }

Porous Walker, Todd Francis: Fools Show

by The Editors on March 15, 2019

Monster Children (another surviving print magazine) and a blue-collar beer company invite you to FOOLS, a two man show by Porous Walker and Todd Francis featuring the artists’ mutual love of irreverence, bad situations, and bodily functions.

Shown will be all new works never before seen by mankind, as well as a large collection of unique, signed and numbered products designed as gifts for the April Fools in your life.

FOOLS launches with a March 21, 2019 opening at 1700 Naud, an evening that will be filled with music, food, laughter, and lamentation. It run until March 28th and is in partnership with Vans. For  more details and to RSVP please click this link.

{ 0 comments }

The End of Print At TransWorld Media

by The Editors on March 5, 2019

In letters to subscribers that began arriving in mailboxes the week of March 3, 2019, American Media Inc, the current owner of TransWorld Skateboarding and Snowboarding magazines announced that both publications will “no longer be published.” Adding insult to insanity, the company also promised to fulfill remaining subscriptions to the legacy titles with copies of their recently acquired (June 2017) magazine Men’s Journal. 

Founded in 1983 by Tracker Trucks owner Larry Balma and Peggy Cozens, Transworld Media built a place where creative kids could flourish mostly undisturbed by outside forces. Aside from helping to usher in the modern board sports era and making skateboarding and snowboarding central to mass youth culture, TransWorld also served as a launch pad for innumerable success stories in fashion, design, photography, music, and filmmaking. Simply put Transworld’s contributions to pop culture cannot be overstated. 

As expected the news lit up social media with eulogies, remembrances, and words of thanks for the part both magazines played in lives of millions. Athletes, artistsmagazine editorsphotographers, designers, legendsTV personalities, brand owners, and even sports agents praised the magazines and lamented the end of what was a really good run.

 

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

@transworldskate 1983-2019 I Helped from Issue #1 back in 1983 and worked there as Photo Editor and Senior Photographer until leaving in 2003. Before computers, internet, phones, podcasts, live-streaming ,etc, Skate Mags and Zines were the only way to see and share what was going on in Skateboarding around the world. We would work on an article or interview for months and skaters would have to wait to get their Skate Fix in the mailbox and then they would pass it on. Readers would study each photo and read every word and soak it in and never forget it. Covers were a big thing, Centerspreads too. Transworld grew organically over time from the tiny black and white amateurish rag into a thick high quality and collectible magazine. The page count varied with the financial ups and downs and popularity of skateboarding, but it always came around, that’s Skateboarding. The digital revolution has taken its toll on all Print, humans just don’t get their news and entertainment from print anymore and they want it Immediately. Hey, time marches on and hopefully future skaters will get creative and produce compelling stories, magazines, books, art, photography and music that need to be felt, held and listened to. Cheers to all of the people that worked on Transworld Skateboarding Magazine and thanks to Larry Balma and Peggy Cozens for taking a chance and starting it. TWS supported a lot of families over the years, we can’t forget that. Sorry to see something with such a Legacy go. This April, 1986 Cover is of @lancemountain in Stockholm, Sweden, Summer, 1985. Photo: Brittain #transworldskateboardingmagazine #transworldskate #larrybalma #peggycozens #skatemagazines #skateboardingmagazine #skatezines #skateboardingisfun #lancemountain #jgrantbrittain

A post shared by Grant Brittain (@jgrantbrittain) on

When we mentioned to a publishing executive that this must be what it feels like to outlive an era, he replied, “I think the era we have outlived is the era of niche media as corporate commodity. Doesn’t seem to work so well.”

And that is true. Independent action media brands like Thrasher Magazine and The Snowboarder’s Journal continue to thrive in print, suggesting that the end of print at TransWorld may have more to do with corporate greed/overhead than anything else. Then again, we have yet to see anyone under the age of 30 lamenting the news, so there’s that as well.

As for the future, TransWorld Skateboarding will live on as a digital property (the staff has already begun posting “thanks, but we’re still here” to their social media streams) and sources tells us that management is working out the details on how and/or which of the company’s two snowboard brands will be preserved online rolling forward.

 

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Thank you for all the love❤️❤️ While the subscription/newsstand based print mag is no longer, (sorry about that notice letter) TWS is still a brand with a crew here working on digital projects like: A feature length Daewon Song documentary out in May and other quality content on our website, youtube, and other social channels. Special Limited Print editions are being planned. Thank you to everyone that has worked here on the magazine over 36 years for all of your inspiration and dedication to skateboarding. And Thank You to all of our subscribers, readers and audience for the support and love through the years.❤️❤️ Onto the next chapter. -TWS crew

A post shared by Transworld Skateboarding (@transworldskate) on

We’d be more optimistic about Transworld’s digital future if it weren’t for AMI. Their reputation for always doing the wrong thing (along with their reportedly toxic CEO David Pecker) doesn’t bode well for the brands.

Through all the sadness we are cheered by the fact that these magazines lasted 20 years longer than we thought they would when we first began preaching the digital revolution. Good work. And, as this has all happened before (remember Skateboarder Magazine and Action Now?) we’re looking forward to what the next generation of creative kids will assemble out of the wreckage.

{ 1 comment }

This Is The Guy Running Action Sports Media

by The Editors on March 4, 2019

Lately, we’ve been wondering what it’s been like for that small group of action sports media professionals who survived the AMI takeover of The Enthusiast Network. How is working for Trump pal David Pecker?

So far we’ve heard nothing from inside the building, but The Daily Beast posted a profile on March 2, 2019 titled How David Pecker Built His Tabloid Empire on Fear that might give some insight into how it could be going for those who still remain. The old story, written nearly two decades ago, suggests that Mr. Pecker has morphed his management style very little over the past 20 years.

[Link: The Daily Beast]

{ 0 comments }

Fox Sports To Broadcast Surfing Sport

by The Editors on February 12, 2019

Fox Sports today announced that they have signed a deal making them the exclusive U.S. television broadcaster for shows produced by a certain privately owned entertainment company specializing in event and online streamed content production (mostly surfing sport).

FOX Sports will telecast more than 500 hours of [surf event] programming, including live contests and highlight shows, across FOX, FS1, FS2 and the FOX Sports app in 2019.

This just might mean we’ll end up watching some of the surfing sport shows this season. Haven’t for quite some time. . . we’ll see. We were surprised to see no mention of the Oprah Winfrey Network? Maybe that deal isn’t done yet. For the official word from Fox (including all the details we’ve purposely ignored in light of our own sad, tired, anti-establishment proclivities), please click the link.

[Link: Fox Sports]

{ 0 comments }

Bezos Accuses Pecker Of Dick Pic Blackmail

by The Editors on February 7, 2019

In a story posted on Medium today (February 7, 2019), Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos claims that Surfer Magazine, Transworld Snowboarding, and Transworld Skateboarding’s new parent company American Media (through its tabloid The National Enquirer) has threatened to publish photos of Mr. Bezos’ penis “as well as nine other images” if Mr. Bezos didn’t call the Washington Post off its investigation of American Media CEO David Pecker’s relationship with Donald Trump, according to a story on the Huffington Post.

Here’s a little of what Mr. Bezos is claiming:

I was made an offer I couldn’t refuse. Or at least that’s what the top people at the National Enquirer thought. I’m glad they thought that, because it emboldened them to put it all in writing. Rather than capitulate to extortion and blackmail, I’ve decided to publish exactly what they sent me, despite the personal cost and embarrassment they threaten. . . They said they had more of my text messages and photos that they would publish if we didn’t stop our investigation.

Usually these stories that have nothing to do with skateboarding, snowboarding, or surfing would be well outside our “lane.” But last week’s sale brings it all home to our world. Think about it? This suggests that those left at what once was TEN are now in a not-so-roundabout way working for the Trump Administration, forcing action sports marketing people to ask themselves, “Do we really want to support Donald Trump by spending advertising and marketing dollars with American Media in light of all this?”

We can say this: if this is how American Media does business, then the people who had their jobs eliminated last week are the lucky ones.

February 8, 2019 Updates:

Jeff Bezos’ investigator suspects ‘a government agency’ intercepted Amazon CEO’s text messages
Could the National Enquirer—Bezos scandal end AMI’s federal plea deal?

[Link: The Huffington Post]

{ 0 comments }

Grant Ellis Waves Goodbye To Surfer Mag

by The Editors on February 4, 2019

 

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Friday was my last day @surfer_magazine, the company was sold and my position was made redundant. I spent the last 15 and a half years as the photo editor of the magazine I dreamed of being apart of as a child. I opened my first issue in the mid 1980’s and got my first postage stamp picture published in around 1998, of @rosswilliamshawaii surfing #JBay. I remember my first full page shot of @tajamos and then my first cover of @taylor_knox and thinking it doesn’t get any better than this. Then came the position of photo editor, Wow, incredible. This job has been a dream. I have met and traveled to amazing destinations with some of my childhood heroes. One of the highlights was a trip with @markocchilupo #Andyirons @lukeegan and @daverasta. Every trip has been an adventure, having traveled all over the globe with amazing people. The job has not always been easy it came with challenges which I have learned from. I am really excited about my future I am still just as passionate about surfing as I ever have been. It is so exciting to watch and be part of these days. I plan to stay involved in the lifestyle I have been dedicated to since the age of 8 and look forward to spending even more time out there amongst the action and excitement that is surfing today. I wanted to send this to everyone that has been a friend, a mentor, a teacher and a critic over the years. Thank you all it has helped me guided me and made me wiser.

A post shared by Grant Ellis (@grantellis1) on

{ 1 comment }

Did American Media Just Buy TEN?

by The Editors on January 31, 2019

American Media, the parent corporation of Men’s Journal, Radar, US Weekly and more famously the National Enquirer (you know, the company run by Donald Trump’s friend David Pecker) is reportedly purchasing all the action sporting brands from TransWorld Skateboarding, SnowboardingSnowboarder, and Surfer Magazine’s parent company The Enthusiast Network. TEN employees were apparently informed today (January 31, 2019) during an all-hands meeting at TEN’s headquarters in Carlsbad, California. 

According to reports the new owners sent the staff of Transworld Snowboarding, Snowboarder, and Powder magazines home from the OR/Snow Show in Denver, Colorado as quickly as they’d arrived.

Things may not be looking all that bright for current TEN employees. As one media executive who is not involved with either company told us, “I would assume this is going to be brutal. American Media has tons of debt, so I doubt they’re going to invest in anything. They probably see synergies and cost-cutting as a quick way to shape up the bottom line.”

According to a post on Transworld Motocross’s website (which has since been taken down) the magazine has been shuttered. Here is the entire note from TWMX’s Donn Maeda:

I founded TransWorld Motocross in November of 2000. At the time, the motocross magazine marketplace was crowded and we were the eighth title joining in on the fun. It was an exciting time, paired with my good friend Garth Milan and teamed with Revolution Advertising – a freelance agency that laid out the magazine – we built the foundation for what would become the world’s best-selling motocross magazine within only a matter of months.

It’s hard to cover all the highlights that I’ve enjoyed over the past two decades… there have been too many. We’ve produced over a dozen great motocross movies, successfully launched the largest local race series on the west coast…heck we even had a one-year stint helping produce TransWorld Motocross Japan. Most of all, the memories I treasure most are of all the places I’ve visited and the friends I’ve made. Watching racers I’ve met as mini riders grow up, rise through the ranks, and go on to be champions, has been a privilege…

Today, our parent company was purchased by another media entity that sadly, has no interest in moving forward with TransWorld Motocross, in spite of our overall success and profitability. That said, our magazine, web site, and race series are on hold. I say hold, because the same group of dedicated editors and salesmen who have built this brand alongside me are still committed to creating the same great content. We are actively working on a plan to resume business as usual.
So, as cliché as it sounds, this is not a goodbye…it’s a see ya’ soon!

Stab Mag has some inside scoop from TEN’s Surfer Mag side that goes something like this:

All up, more than 50 percent of TEN’s staff was culled, which was reportedly part of the deal between TEN and AM. In other words, if TEN wanted to be bought by AM, they’d have to slash a significant number of employees first. . . Included in the termination was the renowned South African photojournalist, and the magazine’s longtime Photo Editor, Grant Ellis, who spent nearly two decades under the Surfer Mag banner, and worked through its most successful years, often putting out 200+ page mags each month through the mid-’00s.. . Writer Ben Waldron, sales manager Brent Reilly, and long-time publisher Tony Perez were also reportedly laid off from Surfer’s staff, along with dozens more employees from TEN’s other publications. . .“It was shocking,” said a source from the Carlsbad office. “It was like the whole building got the air sucked out of it.”

Anyone who thinks this shocking, doesn’t know the history at TEN. The brands involved have been through decades of interesting times not much different from today. Yes, it is hard on the employees who get cut, but it seems the brands will live to fight a few more battles before this whole action sports media thing is over.

Forbes had the following story up for a minute, took it down, and now it’s back up with all the quotes.

New owner. New people. New plans. Have a great weekend, ya’ll. Oh, and if you’d like to read the official press release from American Media about their purchase, please follow the jump.

[click to continue…]

{ 7 comments }