Quoted: Women's Magazines

Back in the old MPub days (so long ago...), we had a conversation about women's vs. men's magazines (which, incidentally, led to an obsession with James Franco—another story for another time). We tried for a long time to get down to what it was about women's magazine editorial that makes them different and frankly, less intelligent than men's editorial (in general). This quote from Margaret Webb explains part of what I've been trying to get at:

The thing that's always bugged me about women's magazines—not all, but 80 percent -- is their prevailing editorial attitude toward readers, women, is that they're imperfect specimens in need of fixing or are so emotionally fragile they require constant celebration. Advertisers, then, are the white knights riding in with the fix or pat on the head -- hair product, lipstick, weight-loss plan, speedy supper remedies -- and editorial generally panders to them with an excess of service stuff as well as editorial that's as vanilla as it is earnest (no irony or risky humour, please, women are too stupid to get it). For example, a while back, Chatelaine did a service piece on how to cope with fatigue, offering tips such as power napping, what to eat to avoid afternoon slumps etc. Heck, shouldn't the story be about why women are so fatigued and offer strategies on how to kick the fat butts of partners and kids who are shirking their share of the domestic load?

On the other hand, men's magazines like Esquire respect their readers no matter how imperfect, flatulent or drunk. It's the world that needs fixing, not their readers. Their nudge-wink pact with the reader is that every man coulda been James Bond if only James Bond hadn't gotten there first, the lucky bastard.

/via Canadian Magazines

Related: Cover Lies, Jezebel

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