Once, it was THE most powerful and prestigious news publication in the world.
When I was a kid, I read Teddy White's excellent book, In Search of History.
White was a smart, poor Jewish kid from Boston who went to Harvard on a scholarship and then went to work for Time Magazine when it was at its height. Traveling on Henry Luce's limitless travel expenses for correspondents, and the power and the prestige of what was then the greatest publication in America, White traveled the world, writing.
As an impressionable 18 year old (or so), I saw in White a role model for myself. If I worked really hard, maybe one day I could also write and travel for Time Magazine.
Time, of course, was the 'jewel in the crown' of Henry Luce's journalism empire. Founded with his Harvard roommate, Britton Chance upon their graduation, Luce had the then radical idea of publishing a weekly summary of the news in short, snappy bursts.
The magazine took off, in a big way, and soon was generating so much money that Luce could create other lesser stars in his celestial empire such as Life Magazine, Sports Illustrated, Fortune and others.
Luce built a giant business, Time/Life, with a giant glass tower on Sixth Avenue overlooking Rockefeller Center. He made and broke Presidents. He created foreign policy. He was a true Media Lord.
How tragic, then, as to what has become of Time Magazine.
Life was, of course, killed by television.
Time, it seems, has been killed by the Internet.
Once thick with ads, the magazine is now the width of the staple that holds it together.
And, of course, in a world of instant, and limitless, online news and information for free, what is the value in a weekly publication that is a summary of the week's news?
Ironically, many years ago, when I was first starting out the VJ thing, I found my very first support in Time Magazine. Joe Quinlan who was an executive there gave me my first Hi8 camera and supported my very first forays around the world with it.
Later, I trained a few Time Magazine journalists to shoot and edit their own videos. This was in 1990! Way ahead of its time. Nick Nicholas, who was then Chairman and CEO was a major supporter very early on.
Thus it was that I was sorry to see Time being sold (apparently) to Meredith, who publishes Home and Gardens and Family Circle.
Sic transit gloria mundi.