Magazines are having a little envy with the success of The Economist. Even when they have raised subscription fees and prices, their circulation has doubled and are growing in ad support. Other publishers are are trying to jump on that, so they guess they have to be more like them. But according to Vanity Fair, they are making a mistake because trying to imitate them is a “fool’s errand”. They list four reasons why. Here’s part of number one:
1. They can’t match the snob appeal
Every eight years someone writes a well-argued take-down of The Economist. The most popular charge, which James Fallows first articulated in The Washington Post in 1991, is that people just carry the magazine around to look sophisticated. Its readers, Fallows complained, are in thrall to its “smarty-pants English attitudes” and “Oxbridge swagger”.