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28-08-2012
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Singer Replaced by Needleman as T Magazine Editor *Update* Singer Back to Vogue
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Two years after leaving Vogue to run the New York Times’ style magazine, T editor in chief Sally Singer's tenure has come to an end. The Times confirmed Singer is planning to leave T at the end of this week, and no successor has been named. It's not clear why Singer is leaving, but her editorial picks have gotten mixed reviews, and the advertising numbers have been soft.

Singer headed Vogue’s fashion news and features departments for more than a decade before moving to T. (In a trade of sorts, her predecessor, Stefano Tonchi, had left to become editor in chief of Condé Nast's W several months earlier.) Singer's aesthetic proved markedly different from her predecessor’s: While Tonchi hadembraced luxury and elegance, Singer’s T was a “kind of neo-grunge” affair, as described by one industry insider, and became “the anti-fashion fashion magazine.” Singer put downtown icons like Patti Smith (and, more recently, Lana Del Rey) on her often black-and-white covers, and within, readers found an intellectualized version of the standard fashion book.
That departure from its glossy roots seemingly didn’t help matters on the ad side at T, which was a cash cow for the Times Co. under Tonchi. According to WWD, salespeople complained that Singer’s T was a difficult sell, leading Times executive editor Jill Abramson to chastise Singer late last year. And despite the luxury ad boom that’s bolstered most high-end fashion books in 2012, T’s numbers have been soft: The magazine's pages were down 4 percent through May 20 from the same period last year, according to Media Industry Newsletter.

At the same time, T’s biggest rival, The Wall Street Journal's luxury magazine WSJ., has seen serious growth in recent months. While WSJ sold fewer than half the thousand-plus pages T did in 2011 (when T published 15 times to WSJ's nine), WSJ's pages have increased 51 percent from March to May of this year versus the year-ago period.
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28-08-2012
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LUXXX's Avatar
 
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I'm not totally surprised...her cover features, while totally interesting to most of us, were not going to appeal to the masses.

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28-08-2012
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That's too bad. Totally respected her work at Vogue, but never quite got what she was doing with T.

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28-08-2012
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that's too bad. i collect T, mainly because of singer, having been an admirer of her work in vogue.

i like her because of the fact that she's not all about luxe and elegance and sex when it comes to fashion. she did her own thing, and i highly respect her for that.

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29-08-2012
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what exactly is alix browne's role at T magazine? is she just a contributor or is an official editor? personally,if they are going to be looking,they have a good option right there. she was editor & chief at V magazine from its inception and frankly the standards have truly gone downhill since she departed.

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29-08-2012
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How sad.. T had quickly become on of my favorites. And I didn't even consider it 'anti' anything by any means, it's sad how just trying to walk around the conventional pattern is already too risky and unwanted in fashion these days.

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30-08-2012
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None of these names excite me, in fact I find them horrifying.

Quote:
Who's Up Next for T?

WHOSE TIME FOR T?: The staff at T: The New York Times Style Magazine was shocked when editor in chief Sally Singer announced on Wednesday that she would be leaving the company by the end of the week. It appears the same could not be said for executives at the Times, who are already talking to a few possible successors.

Deborah Needleman, editor of rival WSJ. Magazine, has been mentioned as a possibility, although many insiders believe she wouldn’t walk away from her current gig, where she oversees the glossy magazine and the Off Duty section in The Wall Street Journal’s Weekend Edition. Needleman, reached on Thursday on a beach in Indiana, far removed from the New York media world, said, “I love my job. I’m focusing on our fall-winter issues right now from the Midwest.”

GQ deputy editor Michael Hainey has also been mentioned by several sources as a possible successor to Singer. He was said to be considered for the job two years ago but was passed over for Singer. He could not be reached for comment. Another name being bandied about is Styles editor Stuart Emmrich, who is known to be a favorite of the Times’ top brass. He declined comment Wednesday.

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30-08-2012
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^i concur.

i still say alix browne would be great but apparently they're going that generic glenda bailey route.

i don't really understand their excuse about sally being too edgy because didn't the magazine actually kind of start out as being a bit edgy in the first place?


Last edited by Scott; 30-08-2012 at 09:42 AM.
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30-08-2012
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Well RIP T magazine. This is so sad. I just started buying the magazine (It's rather hard to find here) and I loved it. If they wanted to make more money up the price of the issues. The magazine alone sells for $2.38 at the local news stand here and I know I'd gladly pay more for it. The content was always so good (and models on the covers!)

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30-08-2012
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^that's such a great point....i think more than your average grocery newsstand rag would have suffice. talk about profit taking priority over quality of content. it will die before we know it.

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14-09-2012
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More Chatter About Deborah Needleman, T Magazine

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It’s the rumor that won’t go away. The talk of fashion and media circles continues to be centered on Deborah Needleman and her possible jump to T: The New York Times Style Magazine. On Thursday, insiders insisted that not only was Needleman going to T, but she was also planning to take a bunch of editors with her. It was believed that Needleman would make the transition from The Wall Street Journal to The Times following the collections in Europe. Reached by e-mail, Needleman said Thursday, “This is not true. If I had accepted a job there I would be working there.”
Not exactly a statement that clears the air — more like further muddying the waters.

As one source put it, the real question is whether Needleman will be at the collections in Europe on behalf of WSJ or T.
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14-09-2012
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Deborah Needleman Reportedly Offered T Position Twice Now

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WSJ editor Deborah Needleman has reportedly been offered Sally Singer's former position at T magazine twice now, according to WWD, although she insists she hasn't accepted the job. But Needleman has every reason to stay put: WSJ is currently thriving, and announced just today that they're adding another issue to its yearly schedule (making for 11 issues in total) and will transition into a monthly by 2014. So, T is the new Dior, for now?
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27-09-2012
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LAME. This magazine will be watered-down for sure with her at the head.

Quote:
Times Selects Deborah Needleman to Run Its Style Magazines

Deborah Needleman, the editor in chief of The Wall Street Journal’s style magazine, has been hired to run T: The New York Times Style Magazine, the Times announced Tuesday. Ms. Needleman is taking over a franchise that publishes 15 magazines a year and is closely followed in the fashion industry.

Ms. Needleman will replace Sally Singer, a former Vogue editor who left The Times in August after running the T magazines for two years.

Jill Abramson, executive editor of The New York Times, said she expects Ms. Needleman to help drive T’s expansion.

“Deborah is a creative and innovative editor with an impeccable sense of style and design,” Ms. Abramson said in a statement. “As we look to expand and extend T and continue to evolve it for our loyal and sophisticated New York Times audience, we will rely on Deborah’s broad range of experience and creative energy. She is coming on board to strengthen the franchise and re-imagine its future on all platforms.”

In addition to running the Journal’s style magazine, WSJ, Ms. Needleman oversees the paper’s weekend lifestyle section, called Off Duty. Earlier in her career she founded the style and decorating magazine Domino, and was an editor at large for House & Garden. She also co-authored ”The Domino Book of Decorating” and wrote ”The Perfectly Imperfect Home.”

nytimes

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Last edited by HeatherAnne; 27-09-2012 at 09:49 AM.
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27-09-2012
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Wow, they must have made her an offer she couldn't refuse.

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04-10-2012
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What Will T Look Like Under Deborah Needleman?

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Even though Deborah Needleman took weeks to negotiate the conditions of her new post at T, new reports suggest that she was in talks with the Times well before her predecessor, Sally Singer, had even been let go. This would explain why she already had her first cover planned out mere days after assuming her new role, which she did officially on Monday this week. Everyone assumed that her lengthy negotiations were mostly to do with salary — WWD reported today that Needleman's previous employer, The Wall Street Journal, promised to match any offer that the Times made, and that the Times eventually "had to dip into its discretionary budget to get her." But reports today suggest that she also had requirements about specific changes to T.

While there's no confirmation from the Times that these alterations will go into effect, here's what she reportedly asked for, according to WWD:

- She wants T to have its own publisher, which would take pressure off her to woo advertisers. This is an interesting move because bringing in ad dollars is one of Needleman's greatest strengths, and Singer's downfall was attributed to her weakness in this area.
- She wants T to be a monthly. Stefano Tonchi asked for this years ago as well, but the Times said no because it would might draw advertisers away from their other sections, like The New York Times Magazine.
- Instead of having themes like design, travel, and fashion, she wants each issue to be general-interest.

Meanwhile, she also brought two of her WSJ. staffers with her to T: fashion features director Whitney Vargas and creative director Patrick Li. There's some question as to whether current T staffers will be re-ordered under the new leadership; WWD suggests that creative director David Sebbah might jump ship, but he predates Singer, so his position seems solid. If anything, online editor Jane Herman seems vulnerable, since she came with Singer from Vogue. Should she depart, this would open up an interesting job opportunity for Internet-savvy fashion people, of whom there are still decidedly few at that level.
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