I've written about the size of fashion magazines in the past, both in essays and fiction, but I really must dip a toe back into the pool again here because, I'm sorry, but the new issue of Vogue has "“ not kidding "“ 727 pages of advertising!!
And guess what folks, they're so proud of this inanity, they've gone and boasted as much on the front cover! Yes, it's 100 pages thicker than last year's September issue!
I mean come on now CondÃ© Nast! Forget for a moment about the number of trees needed to publish an albatross of that size, what about the amount of money spent by both advertisers and publisher putting it together? Couldn't they find a better use for all that dough?
To attract 100 new advertisers, the mag had to come up with a new ploy: a Web-based broadband channel, which they're calling "added value." (With shows entitled "60 Seconds to Chic," it's hard to argue.)
Eh, I'm not impressed. I mean GQ in Italy has had their own broadband running for a couple years now. I know because they interviewed me (watch for yourselves here and here) way back in '05. I don't think the number of subscriptions over at that mag has gone up because of it, nor do I think Vogue TV will change the world, either.
The other thing I'd like to add about fashion magazine heft is this: when you're standing in line at the supermarket, mindlessly thumbing through one, have you ever noticed that you can NEVER EVER find the cover story? Is it just me, or do they really make it hard for us to find them, buried as they are between perfumed advertisements and malnutritioned-looking runway glams??