GWAS Bulletin Board

Calling all "grandmas, grannys, bubbes, nonnas and nans" with strong sewing skills; one-of-a-kind, eco-friendly accessories label Lydra, of the bespoke clutch purse, is looking for you to become a part of the label's new project. "The idea is to enable the elderly to connect with the younger community through their love for fashion, offering a sense of purpose, a platform for creativity and opportunities to make new friends!", says owner Linda Vydra. "I will be holding a big Tea Party to launch the Grannys and the new range in a couple months in Melbourne." For more info, email

Cupcakes, accessories and community? How very GWAS-friendly... and timely! Thanks for the tip, Whishy.

Girl With a Satchel

Media Talk: Secrets, stigma & powerful journalism

Media Talk: Secrets, stigma & powerful journalism

Kate Legge's piece on suicide, 'It's Time To Talk', in The Weekend Australian Magazine is one of those pieces of journalism that makes the profession look like a respectable calling in the era of Today Tonight sensationalism and TMZ-led reportage. The delicacy and professionalism with which she handled the subject matter is to be commended; I hope it gets Walkley recognition.

The motivation behind the feature is to break down the stigma around suicide, which claims more Australian lives than motor accidents each year, with Legge having witnessed a suicide in London herself when she was 18. Legge explores the issue from all angles; the arc being the tension between the benefits of a national prevention campaign "stressing the links between mental illness and suicidal thoughts" and "fear of a contagion effect" whereby publicity might heighten "anxiety, stress and thoughts of suicide" amongst those most vulnerable to its pull. Legge writes:

GWAS comment

"I find people who like to look down their noses at other people are generally projecting their own insecurities on to the other person/people. In psychology, this is called projection bias. So, for instance, if someone is uncomfortable with their own spending habits or tries very hard to control their own spending tend try to ease their own discomfort by judging other people who spend money or buy nice things by labelling them as “insecure or lacking any emotional depth or lonely” etc. That’s why I don’t buy into other people’s criticisms unless they have scientific proof to back their observations up and/or use non-judgemental terms and balanced viewpoints." 'Anon' in response to 'Overcoming the Madame Bovaries'

Media Talk: So you want to work for The New York Times?

While some young graduates, like GWAS' Liz Burke, go on to get great jobs on prestige mastheads, and others get those coveted News Limited/ABC cadetships, most of us have to put in the hard yards on lesser known titles or in corporate communications roles before finding our way to our dream writing/designing/editing jobs. Without losing heart, it's wise to keep one's expectations in check while positioning yourself as a hard working, ethical job candidate who can turn a decent phrase and generate a lead off your own bat while looking composed and contented in your work and not like a smug smarty-pants who deserves better because you got a perfect GPA. Fact is, no one really cares about your GPA. Basic stuff, I know, but you'd be surprised how many fledglings still just do not get it. So make like that corporate newsletter/blog/internship is the most important job on earth. And find yourself a credible online platform through which to get your writing known; one that is not Facebook. I'll be taking two writing classes at QUT this semester – lucky them!

Girl With a Satchel

GWAS Bulletin Board

Girl With a Satchel

GWAS Short & Sweet

It's going to be hideously hot today, so I thought, 'Why not wrangle myself into the sun-dress that comes with this month's CLEO?'. Apparently there are seven ways you can wear it. I went for the Grecian style, though I'm sure I've not got it entirely right. The dress requires a strapless bra, if you're not 14, and said bra does a peek-a-boo act under my arm. It's also tricky to match footwear to these colours (I went with silver sandals) – where's a stylist when you need one? Fashion blogger I am not. Thank the Lord I am not under Oscars red-carpet scrutiny. The dress, designed by Roxy, brings me delight because it's of the same grey marle and baby pink colour combination of one of my favourite childhood outfits (a matching tracksuit top and pants). Nostalgia always wins.

GWAS Girl Crush: Emily Jade O'Keefe

Radio host/blogger/TV personality Emily Jade O'Keefe at home. Design by Sophie Baker
When I walk into Emily Jade O'Keefe's place in Camp Hill, Brisbane (Kevin Rudd's 'hood), and spot a copy of Kasey Edwards' Thirty Something and the Clock is Ticking on the table near her pink Sony Vaio, I know we'll have lots to talk about. Not that a radio presenter/TV personality/blogger such as Emily would be devoid of talking points. The lady gets paid by Austero and News Limited to have an opinion. And her opinion on the book? "It didn't bring me any joy to read it; it just scared the pants off me." Sweet relief – I wasn't the only one. Add to that her love of L. M. Montgomery novels, her dog, and God, and our newfound friendship was off to a great start...

The Burke Report

Liz Burke rounds out the week in news and current affairs...

Another week, another disaster, another reason for rolling media coverage and another excellent display of compassion from our fellow downundermen. The shocking 6.3 magnitude earthquake that rocked Christchurch, New Zealand’s historically rich, picturesque city, transforming it into a quake-ravaged disaster zone, saw monuments, homes, businesses, and at least 113 lives lost in the devastation. At the time of writing, there are 200 still missing, while police and emergency rescue forces scour the once-bustling area and begin the clean-up process with a faint hope for more incredible stories of human survival.

Media Talk: How to get (more) women to buy The Australian Financial Review

Media Talk: How to get (more) women to buy The Australian Financial Review...

Supplements with a female interest spin in today's Fin Review pique the interest of Girl With a Satchel. The front-page of the paper advertises the colour magazine's cover story, 'Wealthy Women of the West', alongside the headline 'PM gambles on 2012 carbon price'. 
Girl With a Satchel

Revival: Gift Giving

  Amy Choi’s Revival column was one of the highlights of The Saturday Age before The Personal Shopper got the proverbial chop, so I’m delighted she accepted my invitation to bring some of her op-shopping tales to Girl With a Satchel. Prettier in print – but nothing’s stopping you from hitting ‘Control P’ and sharing it with your granny.

It’s not that some people are more deserving than others, merely that some people are a darned sight easier to buy for. So the contents of my present cabinet is weighted very much in favour of those family members who are possessed of an identifiable aesthetic; a sense of personal style.

I keep a well-stocked present cabinet because I do most of my shopping in op shops. In op shops, you can’t always find what you want when you want it. Instead, you have to keep your loved ones in mind at all times, and when the right item presents itself you snap it up and put it away until you need it.

Glossy Talk: Dear SHOP Til You Drop... can we drop Body Talk?

Glossy Talk: Dear SHOP Til You Drop... can we drop the Body Talk?

Dear SHOP Til You Drop,

When I am lounging around the house on the weekend between various activities, like cleaning the toilets and buying groceries (such is the glamour of my 'real life'), I often like to read a magazine and pretend that my life does not involve cleaning toilets and buying groceries. One such time occurred last weekend, as my husband and I were scorched from a morning in the sun and felt like doing nothing but lying around in front of a fan (with clothes on).

As there are many magazines lying about my home office, I am also spoilt for choice. I didn't feel like anything high-brow and didn't feel like imbibing a bunch of unnecessary female angst via a "women's magazine": what I wanted was an easy-breezy, visually engaging read. You were my go-to girl!

Media Talk: Some things are prettier in print

Media Talk: Some things are prettier in print (like books, magazines and invitations)

On any given Monday, a clear folder stuffed with press clippings sits on my desk. This seems a terribly archaic activity, clipping newspaper items in the age of virtual bookmarking – it's also a time consuming one – but there's something soothing about perusing, circling, snipping, organising and filing, particularly those items you may not have chanced across in your online travels... just the same as there's a comfort in taking home accidental items stumbled upon in garage sales, as if they bore your name, or chancing upon a book by a beloved author in a store or library, or discovering a new magazine on the shelves. 

Much has been made of the demise of Borders/Angus & Robertson/REDgroup in the media and what this means for book shop owners and lovers and authors, many who are of the firm opinion that the whole thing is more about mismanagement than the creep of online and its cost-competitive ways. People abandoning print? No way. But more than that, people are still craving the community interaction – and opportunity for "shelf discovery" – that in-store purchasing provides. They are even a comfort in such times.

Glossy Covers: Anthology Issue Two!

Glossy Covers: Anthology magazine issue two

After making an impressive print debut last year, Anthology magazine's second issue – which takes you to London smack-bang in the middle of Fashion Week – is off the presses on on its way to subscribers (mag nation is a stockist in Australia). Brisbane-based Adore web-magazine's British edition is also up online.

Girl With a Satchel

Glossy TV: Park St debrief

Glossy TV: Park St Debrief

While Premier Anna Bligh's media team debrief over the controversy sparked by her appearance on the cover of The Australian Women's Weekly (that would make for interesting fly-on-the-wall TV), Lucy Brook debriefs us on last night's Park St debut. mUmBRELLA reports the show attracted 6,289 metropolitan viewers, most of them in Brisbane, which doesn't quite make it the new Sex and the City or Next Top Model. Why no interest in life within the glossy bubble? Perhaps the series could find a more accessible home on Network Ten's free-to-air digital channel Eleven? Lachlan? James?

While there was a lot of blathering about how magazines rake in $2b a year, and how ACP is the largest magazine company and how they have so much influence over women (yikes), rah rah rah, Park St's debut episode offered some great industry insight for uni students, up-and-comers and a youth market crazy for fashion and magazines. Word is the show will feature two mags each ep, with more concrete storylines in subsequent airings.

The Digital Gloss Files

...with Margaret Tran

Girlfriend magazine has polled teens about their online usage, finding 89% of teens are on Facebook, 21% are on Twitter (79% think it's OK for celebrities), 95% are "over MySpace", 72% don't have a blog, 62% spend 3-4 hours a day online (7% claim to spend "all day online"), 56% will tag their friends in a photo regardless of whether it's flattering, 70% won't add people they don't know, 49% change their status daily and most have 200-300 Facebook friends. Narissa, 17, tells the magazine, "I am a very private person so when I am feeling down I like to deactivate my Facebook account and have time to reconnect with myself. During these times I don't want to know what other people are doing. When I'm happy and great things are happening in my life and the world, that's when I update my status."

- Everyone's favourite video portal YouTube is in talks to fund celebrity-created content. New York Magazine's Vulture reports that the video corporation will be building out the site's new talent program by reaching out to Hollywood agencies in a bid to secure big names (ahem, "big brands") to create original content: celebrities will reported be offered $5 million per channel.

Glossy Talk: Anna Bligh for The Women's Weekly

Glossy Talk: Anna Bligh for The Women's Weekly

After a cameo appearance in marie claire's March issue, Anna Bligh has run for cover... the cover of The Australian Women's Weekly. What a comfort for Aussie newsstand browsers as we come to grips with the natural disaster affecting our New Zealand comrades as post-flood, post-cyclone clean-ups continue on our own shores.

The Weekly's news editor Jordan Baker spent a week with Bligh, in the lead-up to Cyclone Yasi and touring with her in Ingham, in order to produce the magazine's comprehensive 10-page profile (with requisite studio, home, woman-at-work and family album shots), 'Taking the country by storm'. We're told Bligh managed to get eight hours' sleep before the cover shoot. Hopefully not too much media attention will be given over to Photoshop (more likely how Bligh managed to fit the shoot into her clean-up-the-state schedule – a bit premature, perhaps?).

Girl Talk: Overcoming the Madame Bovaries

Girl Talk: Overcoming the Madame Bovaries

There's a sociological observation in Brendan Cowell's book, How It Feels, that reads, "Lonely people are drawn to clutter because it makes them feel popular". Similarly, there are those of us who fill our lives with useless junk – material or otherwise – to fill those glaring gaps of inadequacy. 

Madame Bovary (aka Emma), the beautiful but foolishly self-indulgent protagonist of Gustave Flaubert's 1856 novel –  subject of a modern (Penguin Books) makeover by Lydia Davis – sought escapism from her boring marriage, motherhood and provincial life via romantic novels, high-fashion magazines, the acquisition of "the finer things" (on credit) and affairs, resulting in a cautionary tale of modern relevance.

Satchelnomics: Australian media ownership update

Satchelnomics: Australian media ownership

By Liz Burke

Having once been laughed out of a computer lab for inquiring as to who or which group owned the internet, I can confidently say these days such a query regarding the Australian media would hardly be greeted with such raucous laughter; but be prepared for a complicated answer. After recent announcements of major U.S. news site mergers and buy-outs, perhaps even the former query would be excused.

Name changes, mergers, big sales and public floats... Though not as black and white as the business-page-dominating store wars, there are a few major players who control what we hear, see, read, and gossip about.

Glossy Talk: Teen mag editors speak

Glossy Talk: Teen mag editors speak

Following the release of recent circulation and readership results, GWAS put the following question to Australia's (two!) teen mag editors: What does the disparity between circulation and readership mean for teen magazines?

DOLLY editor Tiffany Dunk
Editor: Tiffany Dunk
Circulation: 103,131 (down 26.5%); Readership: 390,000 (up 7.4%)
"The recent decline in DOLLY’s circulation coincided with a publishing decision to reduce the value of tip-ons we put out, instead choosing to focus on reconnecting the readers with the editorial content of the magazine. But while we may have lost the people who were buying the magazine solely for the gift, we have strengthened our relationship with those buying DOLLY for the magazine itself – this is reflected in our readership uplift.

I’ve spent the last year trying to up our game each and every issue and to make sure that we’re in touch with what our readers are most passionate about. As a teen mag editor, my primary focus has always been making sure that our core audience feel we’re delivering the best content on the issues that matter most to them so to see this reflected in an increase in readership has been incredibly gratifying for the DOLLY team.

I’m so proud of the product that we’re putting out and the feedback we’re getting from teens is encouraging, too – they’re really engaged by the brand and very vocal about what they love about what we do. They’re also pretty vocal about what they don’t like, too! At the end of the day, the reader is king (or queen as the case may be) and if we’re keeping them happy, engaged and coming back for more the next month then we can congratulate ourselves on a job well done."

Girlfriend editor Sarah Cornish
Editor: Sarah Cornish
Circulation: 90,054 (down 10%); Readership: 359,000 (up 9.1%)
"I think that readership growth is a great indicator of the health of a brand, and in the past 18 months the teen market circulation figures have been shaped by cover-mount activity and cover price changes, so the fact that readership is healthy is probably a better indicator of what the readers are truly feeling about magazines.

We know that teens are passionate about Girlfriend magazine and Girlfriend's point of view because they tell us via our Facebook page and website and the readership figures reflect this. Whereas teens used to be able to buy a magazine each month, now they buy it sometimes, but still try to get their hands on a copy to read.

Our research also tells us that they still place a high value on the intimate relationship they have with magazines and the specific information they can get from Girlfriend. They can also identify the clear differences between the two teen magazines and our market share growth in readership is based on the fact that Girlfriend identifies the key issues in a teen girl's life and addresses them in a positive and proactive way in every issue. We make it's our number one priority to always stay in touch with what our readers want, say and think and we are always on their side."

See also: Georgie Carroll's "Talking teen magazines" report

Girl With a Satchel

Glossy Talk: Vogue leads glossy readership increases

Glossy Talk: Vogue leads glossy readership increases

Australian Vogue won back its well-heeled status in 2010 with a readership increase of 14.8% reflecting overall health for the fashion and lifestyle magazine segments.

Vogue registered 165,000 more monthly readers than its ACP rival Harper's BAZAAR last year. While Harper's out-sold Vogue by 6,500-odd copies each month – a slew of cover-mounts, Australia's Next Top Model coverage and an impressive line-up of covers helping to lure mag-stand browsers – the readership figures suggest that Vogue still has a valued place in the media consumption habits of Australian fashionistas.

Glossy Talk: The Big Issue blitzes readership survey (but are Aussies being tight?)

Glossy Talk: The Big Issue blitzes readership survey (but are Aussies being tight?)

With Australians torn over immigration issues this week, a good news story from the nation's foremost social enterprise magazine. The Big Issue posted the biggest readership gain of any Australian title in the Roy Morgan Readership Survey.

Jumping 75% to reach 227,000 readers every fortnight, The Big Issue attributes the massive increase to its healthy circulation (its street vendors sell an average of 30,213 copies a fortnight) and a strategic marketing campaign executed pro-bono by Melbourne agency The Blue Group.

Glossy Talk: Famous surpasses NW in readership

Glossip Talk: Famous surpasses NW in readership for the first time

"Mean Girls: Khloe takes a stand against Kim's attention-seeking antics"; "She's got big Louboutins to fill!"; "Miley's new man is Amy's ex"... So read the celebrity scandal headlines inside of this week's Famous, any of them a fitting analogy for the five-year rivalry between the magazine and its ACP counterpart NW, which just got very interesting.

Pacific Magazines' Famous has surpassed its main weekly competitor in the Roy Morgan Readership Survey for the first time since its launch in 2006. Recording the highest readership growth for any women's weekly in the year to December 2010, Famous has passed NW by 24,000 readers, representing an 11.1% increase over the year. Famous now claims 330,000 readers to NW's 306,000.

Mags: State of the (mag)nation - December 2010 Readership

The December 2010 Roy Morgan Readership results were very good news for Rupert Murdoch's News Magazines: the publisher is responsible for putting out a 77% share of the country's food magazines, for which we have an enduring passion reflected in a 22.6% category rise. Four of the top 10 most read monthly titles are News foodies.

Though our appetite for MasterChef in print waned 12% between September and December 2010 (a glimpse of plateauing sales to come?), News is likely hoping renewed interest in its TV doppelganger will follow from Network Ten's investment in the show: the station just signed a three-year mega-contract to secure the rights. Over-zealous? We do have fickle tastes.

Glossy Talk: Talking teen magazines

Glossy Talk: Talking teen magazines

By Georgie Carroll

If you were to look in my bedroom, you would find piles, and piles, and, uh, piles of magazines. On top of random titles I buy when the mood hits, I have every issue released over the past six years of both Girlfriend and Dolly, and my favourite day of the month is still when the newest issues hit the stand. I always thought this was fairly normal teen behaviour, and once upon a time it may have been, but recent circulation results have shown that less Australian teens are buying magazines.

I was intrigued by this, and so turned to my own blog and readers. One thing I knew a lot of my blog readers shared was a love of glossies, so I set up a survey to get their opinions on magazines. The results, while not overly shocking, don’t paint a pretty picture for the teen mag industry.

Glossy Talk: ACP's Deborah Thomas talks to B&T

Glossy Talk: ACP's Deborah Thomas did not want to become "the John Howard of magazines" (magazines are not the John Howard of digital age)

"People are saying ‘what’s going to happen when everybody gets the magazine for free [with apps]? But they’re not, there’s a price on them. Everything supposedly kills something else but it doesn’t. The media is more fragmented than ever, I’ll give you that, but if you can get a magazine in print or through the iPad, whichever suits you, that’s fantastic. I actually think the iPad is going to introduce a whole new group of readers to magazines, the younger generation who may have strayed away from them... I mean the whole thing about magazines that we keep pushing is that people pay for these.

 - Deborah Thomas, General Manager - Editorial and Advertising Projects, Women’s Lifestyle at ACP Magazines; former editorial director, The Australian Women's Weekly

Source: B&T Weekly

Beauty Talk: I used to be a beauty snob

Beauty Talk: I used to be a beauty snob

When you live inside the 'glossy bubble', you start to take things for granted, like how much shampoo costs. Because you get it FOR FREE. And in abundance. Thus, you have no real sense of the true monetary, from-pocket-to-purchase value of cosmetic, hair and toiletry items, and hence you have no qualms about recommending a $40 concealer or $80 blush or $100 moisturiser to your readers. You have pages to fill, after all, and advertiser requirements to meet. You become educated about what makeup artists use, and what celebrities do, too, and can easily "call in" the same product on the grounds that you will feature it in your magazine. You might experiment with red lipstick one week and peach the next – or emulate the latest catwalk look filtered into your inbox by a cosmetics company (like NARS!) – because doing so will not mean you can't pay the rent/buy food. Things like illuminator and primer and Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat become NECESSITIES. Like toilet paper.  

Girl Talk: Girl Guides breeds leaders, helps to counteract girlie-girl culture "princess mania"

Girl Talk: Girl Guides breeds leaders, helps to counteract girlie-girl culture "princess mania"

It's little wonder that 10-year-old Vanessa Lockwood, celebrated in marie claire's March issue, is a Girl Guide. An aspiring artist/Prime Minister, she told the magazine she's concerned about climate change, rides her bike, dances and swims, likes school, loves reading, plays soccer and believes girls can do boy stuff.

The 2010 'Girl Guides Say' survey results are in. And while bullying ranks amongst the biggest concerns of the 24,500 Guides aged 5-30 surveyed, the results suggest Girl Guides breed leaders: 93% of them aim to be "some sort of leader later in life".

Media Talk: Paula Joye on declining magazine circulation

Media Talk: Paula Joye on declining magazine circulation 

"It's like the Google algorithm – elusive and always changing. It's not just media fragmentation; not just the generational shift; not just relevance or quality of the product; not just perceived disinterest in 'old media'. It's petrol prices, lipstick sales, school holidays – the strangest things influence magazine sales. Always have."

Paula Joye, editor LifeStyled and former editor of Madison, SHOP Til You Drop and Cleo, talking to Caroline Overington in The Australian

Mags: State of the (mag)nation – December 2010 Circulation

The star performers in last year's Australian magazine story defied a cool market for discretionary spending while delivering on positive consumer sentiment for food and entertainment and home and lifestyle glossies. The Audit Bureau of Circulations survey accounted for 132 titles, though more than 1000 titles are available on Australian newsstands.

While Morrison Media's indie title Frankie appealed to more people in the alt/indie/creative/'special interest' demographic, The Monthly also grew its sales by 17.8% in an election year where Twitter made a resounding debut on the political front. Clearly, analysis and long-form journalism still attract a premium audience (all 29,476 of them) willing to part with their pocket money.  

The Burke Report

Liz Burke rounds out the week in news and current affairs...

In a week where parliament resumed, natural disasters eased off a little, and celebs scandalised their way back towards the front pages, some news media folk were no doubt getting a little restless as they retired from rolling coverage routines. As politician’s tears, profanities and celebrity shenanigans reigned over news bulletins, I wish I’d taken a tally of how many times I’ve seen the word “beat-up” appear in comments on major news websites.

Glossy Talk: Good news for Frankie and Harper's BAZAAR

Glossy Talk: Circulation is good news for Frankie and Harper's BAZAAR

While the fashion and women's lifestyle categories suffered near across-the-board losses, there were two good news stories: Morrison Media's Frankie posted a 32.6% circulation increase and ACP's Harper's BAZAAR lifted its game by 6.6%.

The bi-monthly Frankie (a member of the Audit Bureau's "Special Interest" category) had an average of 50,832 copy sales per issue in the year to December 2010, up from 46,684 in 2009, while Harper's BAZAAR attracted 58,776 monthly sales, up from 55,130 the previous year.

"Of course we are really chuffed with the results," says Frankie editor Jo Walker. "It is lovely to have more readers enjoying Frankie, our little team is really pleased. We really still just fill the mag with things we like and are interested in, and people respond to that."

The fashion and women's lifestyle categories both contracted in 2010, registering 8.2% and 3.8% losses respectively. ACP's Cleo posted the biggest sales loss, declining 14.1% to 110,081 copies in the audit, followed by Pacific Magazines' Marie Claire, which lost 6.2% to give it average monthly sales of 105,658.

Glossy Talk: Teen and tween magazine sales nose-dive; DOLLY posts depressing loss

Glossy Talk: Teen and tween magazine sales nose-dive; DOLLY posts depressing loss

Despite aggressive cover-mounting tactics, DOLLY magazine weathered a 26.5% decline in sales last year, giving it the dubious honour of recording the biggest fall of any monthly title. The magazine sold an average of 103,131 copies, representing a loss of more than 37,000 monthly sales overall in 2010 and a 42% loss in sales since 2000.

Glossy Talk: Grazia sales drop 19%; Famous gains again

Glossy Talk: Grazia sales drop 19%; Famous gains again

Newly appointed Grazia editor Kellie Hush certainly has her work cut out. The magazine suffered a 19% circulation decline last year with all the weekly titles posting losses except for rival Famous.

The fashion and gossip weekly, retailing at an exorbitant $6, reported a weekly sales average of 53,511 copies in the year to December 2010, according to the latest Audit Bureau of Circulations survey, far from the projected sales of 70-80,000 copies per week touted by ACP when the title debuted in 2008.

Still, with new hires in place, the magazine's inaugural Shopping Awards in the making and discounted subscriber offers tempting casual buyers to secure their piece of gloss, ACP is not giving up on the weekly fashion glossy just yet.

Media Talk: Arianna Huffington + Tina Brown in Harper's BAZAAR

Media Talk: Arianna Huffington + Tina Brown in Harper's BAZAAR

"The Web is so interactive. We all pick up Huffington Post scoops, and Huffington Post picks up ours, because we all need the traffic. We can't afford not to. At a different moment in media, if I were editing the New York Daily News and Arianna were editing the New York Post, maybe that kind of contest would be more of a smackdown, but I honestly don't think that the new media world is about that. Everybody likes to crow when their own news organization gets a scoop, but it doesn't feel we're both racing to get an interview with Joe Biden or whomever.

We live in an era when it's almost like people are anxious not to get so cutthroat because you never know where you're going to wind up in a partnership. As the economy is linked, you find you're doing things together, and you may as well have good relationships.

What we are doing [with Newsweek/The Daily Beast] is that the digital side will be driving the print side rather than the other way around. The energy and the ideas laboratory will be the Daily Beast, and out of that the magazine will form itself as the foil to that. Instead of thinking, How do we make a Web site that extends the magazine? it's more about the energy coming from the Web site that will be developed in print." 

- Tina Brown, editor-in-chief, Newsweek and The Daily Beast 

Following this week's announcement of Arianna Huffington's $315 million deal with AOL and last week's confirmation of a Newsweek merger with Tina Brown's The Daily Beast, Harper's BAZAAR's Elisa Lipsky-Karasz sat down with two of America's foremost female media guns to talk about online rivalries, dealing with bad press and women in positions of power. It's a great get. And, coincidentally, it comes in the same week former Hearst magazines president Cathie Black is profiled, somewhat unfavourably, by New York Magazine.

Read the full interview at Harper's online.

Girl With a Satchel

Glossy Talk: Lady Gaga in Vogue's image

Glossy Talk: Lady Gaga in Vogue's image

"They used to call me rabbit teeth in school, and now I'm a real live VOGUE BEAUTY QUEEN!"

So tweeted Lady Gaga on receipt of her March issue American Vogue cover. Oh, dear. I am troubled. This is why:

- Gaga has been Anna Wintourised to within an inch of her page-boy bob. She looks like Agyness Deyn. Less Italian, less outrageous Gaga, more English Rose in Rodarte (or whatever brand she is wearing – Lanvin, maybe?). The shrew has been tamed. Granted, every magazine editor has an aesthetic (for Vogue Nippon, Gaga, who once said, "I will kill to get what I need", donned a meat dress), and Vogue's slew of glossy lovelies mostly comply with it (see after the jump) but to declare Lady Gaga was 'BORN THIS WAY' is rich. She has been manufactured by the pop machine, which has long since eclipsed her raw talent with sensationalised film clips and publicity stunts while drawing heavily from the Madonna School of Sartorialism, and then re-manufactured by Vogue to fit the glossy's mould, too. The blushing pink cover, though certainly showstopping, is giving me Tina Fey flashbacks.

Media Talk: Media culpability in celebrity-endorsed myth making

Media Talk: Media culpability in celebrity-endorsed myth making

"The real story of a crisis of faith in arguably the greatest health breakthrough of the last century, [Seth Mnookin] says now, is one of strong personalities fixated on their own distorted perspectives and of a media that abetted and inflated them by valuing colour and conflict ahead of scientific fact... But then scientific balance was always secondary to the compelling story of one man against the system." - Julie Robotham, 'How 'mommy instinct' outdid science', The Sydney Morning Herald Weekend Edition, February 5-6 2011

Media Talk: The Personal Shopper comes a cropper in Age makeover

Media Talk: The Personal Shopper comes a cropper in Age makeover as fashion gets a Fairfax dressing down

To lament the passing of one's favourite newspaper section seems trivial at best in such times (any time, one might argue), like being peeved about the pitter-patter of falling rain foiling your morning walk (guilty), but mention must be made of one of GWAS' weekend niceties going astray in The Saturday Age's relaunch. Where for art thou, The Personal Shopper?

The regular spread '48 Hours - The Personal Shopper' in the A2 Culture and Life section (now known by the more generic Fairfax 'Life & Style' moniker) had become a staple in the GWAS media diet: feasting on Michi Girl's clever copy, admiring Janice Breen Burns' literary-like, sing-songy 'Hot Six' sartorial prose, feasting on the words of Nicole Bittar ('Covet') and Amy Choi ('Revival') and high-fiving the creativity of the 'I Made It Myself' crew, was a sight for feature-weary eyes (a girl like me can only digest so many stories analysing Egypt in one sitting before her brain spontaneously combusts). This weekly selection of assorted musings on fashion and design added joy to my world – a bit of bonhomie to my breakfast.  

Glossy Talk: Frankly riveting reality TV

Glossy Talk: Frankly riveting reality TV

Editors, editors everywhere! Following in the footsteps of Foxtel/ACP's upcoming Park Street production, and the ABC's hotly anticipated 1970s-set docu-drama Paper Giants: The Birth of Cleo comes news of a new reality series taking us behind the scenes of marie claire Australia with editor/publisher Jackie Frank.

As reported by Jo Casamento in The Sun-Herald, Channel Seven and 7Two are teaming up to shoot a documentary series starring Frank – who celebrated 15 years at the helm of the title last year – in her native habitat at Australian Technology Park, as well as on her travels abroad.

Casamento notes that she couldn't imagine anything "more compelling than Frank in full flight". Too right: marie claire staffers don't wear army-inspired flak jackets just because they're in vogue. Frank's made-for-TV sardonic wit has also been applied to regular stints on Channel Seven's Sunrise program, while she was also a judge on the network's short-lived Make Me a Supermodel series.

Meanwhile, publishing doyenne Ita Buttrose, who will be played by Asher Keddie in the Cleo biopic, is set to launch her latest book: her new subject, etiquette. Buttrose is equally as scolding as Frank when it comes to modern manners (or the lack thereof), disapproving of people who talk on their mobiles while using the treadmill at the gym. Does the same go for editors who conduct meetings while pounding theirs?

A Guide to Australian Etiquette, $29.95, is published by Penguin on February 28. 

See also:
Who editor Nicky Briger on Jackie Frank
Frank by name, Frank by nature

Girl With a Satchel

GWAS Girl Crush: Beci Culley

 Artist Beci Culley, 29, stepped into my life one Saturday afternoon late last year for tea and fruit bun with a mutual friend. She is one of those rare gems who leave you feeling energised, as if anything is possible, but not in the way of a motivational speaker. It's in the way she lives. I stopped by her Brisbane home and studio last week to play with her makeup and talk about how her art imitates her life and vice versa.

The Burke Report

Liz Burke rounds out the week in news and current affairs...

Seriously, Mother Nature. Epic flooding, destructive storms, even locusts have made a recent appearance. All poor Queensland needs now is a river of blood and a guy with a stick and it would be a lot like another story I know.

The former category five Cyclone Yasi ripped through northern Queensland on Wednesday night. Save for one young fella who powered up a generator inside his house without adequate ventilation, the cyclone spared lives as it bypassed high-population areas and set on a path between Richmond and Mount Isa.

Glossy Talk: GRIND magazine

Glossy Talk: GRIND magazine

While Rupert Murdoch's The Daily has been the centre of the media's attention this week, a small Gold Coast based publisher got my attention with a custom title called GRIND. The magazine is published by Connect Custom Publishing, a division of Business News Publications, on behalf of the Zaraffas coffee chain.

The content, design and editorial vision are a cut above – it's printed on 100% recycled paper using soya bean ink with a range of content traversing topics from eco-science and innovation ('What the frack is going on?' tackles the coal seam gas industry) through to the arts and, of course, coffee. The magazine is full of flavour, taking you to New York, Lamington National Park and Papua New Guinea. I read it over an hour with a cappuccino only to find myself craving a "cafe cortado".

Custom publishing is really coming into its own as brands endeavour to make authentic connections with consumers beyond traditional advertising, and GRIND has the makings of a benchmark title in this regard.

Editor Jason Oxenbridge tells us more about the magazine...   

GWAS Media Satchel

Bits and (Anna Wintour) bobs from the glossy media beat...

- Vanity Fair's annual Hollywood Issue has landed with the cover shot by Norman Jean Roy. The Class of 2011 features: Ryan Reynolds, Jake Gyllenhaal, Anne Hathaway, James Franco, Jennifer Lawrence, Anthony Mackie, Olivia Wilde, Jesse Eisenberg, Mila Kunis, Joseph Gordon Levitt, Andrew Garfield, Rashida Jones, Garrett Hedlund, Noomi Repace and Robert Duvall.

- Gwyneth Paltrow is on the March cover of UK Harper's BAZAAR, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is on the cover of UK Vogue and Keira Knightley fronts UK ELLE. On poopy feedback on GOOP, Gwyneth told BAZAAR: "Any time you do anything with any degree of sincerity, people make fun of you. That's totally fine. I don't care. I don't read any of it. My thing with Goop has always been, if you don't like it, then don't log onto it. There were a couple of times when I thought, 'I'm just gonna stop doing it. People are so mean to me. I don't want to do it.' But then I was like, 'Who cares what some lame person out there says?' I was in Italy once, and this old man came up to me and said, 'I had the best time in Nashville because of Goop.' And that is so worth it to me." 

Media Stimulus Package (The Economist, Spectator)

Media Stimulus Package (The Economist, Spectator) 

In lieu of a glossip report this week, Liz Burke wraps up the current affairs titles (aka smarty-pants mags) for your consumption.

When you live with a bunch of well-informed yuppies (love you, roomies), it’s not unlikely to find copies of intimidating current affairs mags scattered between your glossips and fashion books.

So, in an effort to keep up with dinner table discussion, I’ve had a flick through a few of these intellectual reads (broken up with some Russh and Vogue reading) and am here to impart a few tips and tricks I’ve picked up from the more elite titles should you find yourself in snobbish circles stuck for conversation, and wish to impress on issues of politics, culture, and economy.

Conversation starter: “Wouldn’t you say Obama’s state-of-the-union speech was strikingly unaudacious? He really failed to address the underlying issues of America’s precarious economic and social situation. More like troubled state of the union!”

What's up online?

What's up online?
Glossy happenings in cyberspace.

- has a new look. Fashionista's flattering summary: "Along with a simplified home page, gallery images will be 33% bigger, and there will be a “buy the look” option on market stories. We’re particularly fond of the Breaking News module, which directs people to what they actually want to read online: news." The site's younger sister,, whose traffic feeds into the URL, also has a new, easy-to-navigate blog-style user interface.

- But this week in media-on-media (as apposed to media on world events*), it's all about The Daily, Rupert Murdoch's iPad newspaper, which is to be launched tomorrow.

"A Daily-watcher who thinks the thing is amazing compares it to the Daily Prophet, the magical newspaper read by Harry Potter and his wizard pals," writes Peter Kafka for The Wall Street Journal's Media Memo blog adding, "The Daily is almost defiantly anti-Web: It will have a free site, with a grudging sample of perhaps 10 percent of the newspaper’s stories, but that’s it."

Glossy Talk: Seventeen gets "real" (cover girl) with Neutrogena

Glossy Talk: Seventeen gets "real" (cover girl) with Neutrogena
Seventeen is going where German magazine Brigitte went last year... albeit for one month: it's putting a "real girl" on its October 2011 cover.  

The magazine, which has a readership of more than 13 million teens and tweens, has announced its "Pretty Amazing" cover contest, a search for the "ultimate real girl" sponsored by Neutrogena and in partnership with MTV's The Seven and

"Our readers have been begging to be on the cover of Seventeen," said Ann Shoket, Seventeen's editor-in-chief, in a press release. "So we're psyched that Pretty Amazing will be the first reader cover contest we've done in more than 10 years and the ultimate celebration of our readers' beauty – inside and out."