What Variety’s Struggles Show About Publishing Models

There’s a struggle going on in Hollywood right now between old and new media. Variety, the 107-year-old trade magazine, is not only having trouble finding a suitor, but has also come to the conclusion that its $40 million price tag may be too much.

The problem, like many traditional publishers trying to keep its heads above water, is that there are now many online-only trade publications, like Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood, HollywoodLife.com and to a certain extent TMZ, who offer the same (and sometimes more exclusive) content that doesn’t reside behind a paywall. It’s the same story that’s playing out across industries. It’s hard to imagine that if you were to reinvent Variety today that you’d start with a print product.

Digital properties are more nimble than a weekly and trade publications are not immune to the changes in the media landscape. If Reed Elsevier wants to sell Variety, it needs to prove why a legacy media company can work in a digital world. And as the Post points out, dropping the price may be the only way out.


More in Media

Why Apartment Therapy added more commerce integrations to its tentpole event franchise Small/Cool 

Apartment Therapy’s president Riva Syrop took the stage at the Digiday Publishing Summit to discuss the convergence of commerce and sponsorship revenue within its Small/Cool event.

first party data

For premium publishers, proving an advertiser’s return on investment is more important than ever

Media execs took stage at the Digiday Publishing Summit to discuss the growing importance of ROI in ad campaigns this year.

shopping laptop

Microsoft heralds a new age of AI ‘copilots’ across hardware, software — and advertising

CEO Satya Nadella said AI assistants will be as ubiquitous as PCs and will help users navigate across apps, operating systems and devices.