What happened at Lingua Franca? The monthly had top-notch writing and reporting on the academic life as well as National Magazine Awards, but it shut down in October. It was originally thought to be another September 11 casualty (circulation hovered around 15,000, despite the magazine's heavy buzz). Now, it looks like a $16.5 million lawsuit filed against Academic Partners acquisition Arts and Letters Daily might have hastened the magazine's demise. The charge? Breach of verbal contract -- after the papers selling ALD were signed, promises of payment to the previously working for free executive editor went out the window. What responsibilities come with turning a communal labor of love into a business enterprise? How do you introduce the element of professionalism into something that was once done for fun?
Conde Nast to shutter Mademoiselle. The "deteriorating advertising environment" is blamed for the closing of the 66-year-old title, where Sylvia Plath first cut her teeth on the journalistic life. While Mlle's recent content has devolved into Cosmo-like treatises on how to please your man in bed and where to buy the clothing that will lure him in that general direction, it is more than a bit upsetting (particularly to someone who's trying to eke out a living as a writer) to see yet another Conde Nast-owned title (Details and Women's Sports & Fitness; Fairchild bought Details out and launched a revamped version) fall victim to the great advertising contraction of the past 12 months.