Ever notice how Atlantic bloggers Jeffrey Goldberg and Andrew Sullivan shill compulsively for their magazine—the print edition of their magazine, they are quick to point out, only $14.95/year? It's like Newsies, but with bloggers instead of grubby paperboys.
Will a handsome, plucky Christian Bale arrive in time to free them from the burden of dead trees? For their fate depends on the public's willingness to pay for content, and if cigar-chomping men in penguin suits make it too expensive, they could starve. Let's see what the modern translation for "Papes! Papes! Getcha papes!" is...
- Jeffrey Goldberg, 1.20.10, "The Great Journalism Exodus": (For the record, I think The Atlantic, a mighty ship of journalism, not only won't sink, but will master the waves, and there's even evidence available to back-up this assertion.)
- Jeffrey Goldberg, 10.22.09, "Great Americans Read The Atlantic": If this U.S. Marine, pictured in a helicopter flying over southern Afghanistan, can subscribe to The Atlantic, so can you!
- Jeffrey Goldberg, 12.22.09, "The Value of Actual Journalism": While it is true that both Gawker and TMZ are laying on reporters, it's fair to assume that these reporters won't be doing what the Times does, namely, expose wrongs that cause the deaths of hundreds. [...] Why not subscribe to The Atlantic while you're at it? That would be striking a blow for civilization! Plus, it's a bargain!
- Andrew Sullivan, 9.14.09, "A Simple Request": So please, if you haven't already, subscribe. It's only $14.95 for a year - ten issues for the price of eight. [...] I love this magazine, and its editorial integrity, and want it to continue to flourish in an increasingly beleaguered industry. If you do too, please subscribe.
- Andrew Sullivan, 3.13.09, "Subscribe!": If you like the blogs, you'll love the mag. Get two free issues here. These are very tough times for magazine advertizing, so it really does help support us to subscribe. A first year's sub is $14.95. In my online view, there's nothing like reading a real essay on paper.
- Jeffrey Goldberg, 9.1.09, "Away from the Intertubes": I'm presently out of range, but I should be back fairly soon. In the meantime, you could subscribe to The Atlantic. It wouldn't kill you.
Anyway, Goldberg and Sullivan may not need a team of plucky street urchins to save them with soaring songs, a two-step, and a union. In "A Simple Request" Sullivan is quick to point out that "no one at The Atlantic has put me up to this," and Goldberg isn't shilling so much as evangelizing:
- Jeffrey Goldberg, 9.17.09, "Is The Washington Post Losing Itself?": For 152 years, The Atlantic has done the right thing — long-form, narrative journalism that exposes sin and corruption and holds powerful people accountable and at the same time enlightens and, yes, even entertains. There is no doubt in my mind that the current leadership of The Atlantic will maintain the magazine's righteous course, even if newspapers like The Post lose their way.
Good luck to you, lads. The journey is bleak and the papers are heavy. But, to quote the newsies, you must "Send out the call and join the fray / Arise and seize the day!" You'll best mean old Mr. Hearst, yet. (Except not, because you're trying to save his publications, too, right? This metaphor is getting hard. Let's just watch a show tune and forget about it.)