I love the The New Yorker. I read it as much as I can; I subscribe despite my aversion to weekly magazines (the opress me, the way they tend to stack up.) When Amelie was born, my sole refuge from the turmoil of transforming into a mother was to hide in the bath with a New Yorker.
Newyorker.com is a endless source of bemused frustration for me. Why do they have a website? Why do they promote it in their magazine? It’s a trainwreck of a site; much like the magazine it’s hard to keep up with it. The archives are not online — you can’t have them for love or money. If you aren’t there the week of the magazine, you cannot send the articles to freinds or business folks who need to read them. Compare to New York Times and Harvard Business review, who seem to know 8 ways to make dough off their past.
They barely host advertisement, and then mostly for their limited set of products: the magazine, the “complete collection” on DVD, the online store and perhaps some random other company. Their media kit is bizarrely placed in between ads; their ads often badly crushed and oddly kerned.
The site seems to have been laid out for a monitor from 1998; the warning about correct browsers in teh footer harkens back to those days as well.
I picture the webstaff, a lonely guy or perhaps a Kate Hepburn like woman doing their best to keep the site alive and viable; yet constantly running into problems with a creative director who wants everythign in gifs, and a CEO who wants to know why the ads are cut off on his monitor? I know nothing about the staff, this is just idle speculation.
I would kill for the job of Product Manger for the New Yorker Online. There is a large amount of money to be made from that website, money that could be used to keep great writing alive. I would be web strategy officer for a fourth of my last salary, if I could only get to realize the dormant potential of America’s finest content. I would cut gifs and write css, if I could only help newyorker.com be the destination I know it could be.