House shoots blanks; Economist struggles with iOS 7 updates; Lagardere to sell 10 of its titles

Congressional Republicans take the gun from their heads, at least for now

It took only a minute or two for my Twitter feed to go from non-stop talk about Congress to talk about tech and media once it became obvious that the House Republicans would not prevent the funding of the government and an extension of the debt limit. Like those helicopter videos of police chases, the spectacle was interesting went it was going on, but was quickly forgotten once the fools no longer were there to entertain us.

On the bright side, for a few days anyway there was actual coverage of political events, sometimes in an intelligent manner. Thousands of television viewers probably used this opportunity to reacquaint themselves with the NewsHour, and millions of Fox News viewers may have realized that they do, indeed, live in an alternative universe that has very little to do with reality.


The launch of iOS 7 has really bitten some magazine publishers. The Economist yesterday released its third update in a month’s time as it tried to fix bugs brought on with the release of iOS 7.

Economist-iPad-editors-lgEven with the magazine’s first update, released on September 18 the developers knew there were troubles ahead. “We are aware of an issue for some users upgrading to iOS 7. We have submitted a fix for the issue. Please update the app before updating to iOS 7.”

That was surely a bad sign: how many iPad or iPhone owners will look for app updates before their OS update?

Three days later another update was released that the magazine hoped fixed the bugs. “This update addresses issues when updating to iOS 7, including seeing a blank screen on start-up.”

Blank screens are not good. But now a third update has been released that says “further addresses issues related to iOS7.”

Like iOS 7 itself, these updates are making users reassess their loyalty to their favorite brands. “I have had this app for months yet as a print subscriber have never been able to get full access. Save yourself the aggregation. Stick with the print version,” writes one reader.

Well, at least they love the print magazine. But for iPhone and iPad users there is no alternative: the OS is essentially the product itself.

NOV-SMALLweb1The French publisher Lagardere said today that they would be selling 10 magazine titles including Psychologies Magazine, Be and Premiere.

The publisher is best known for Paris Match, Le Journal du Dimanche and its French edition of Elle.

Lagardere Active head Denis Olivennes said in an interview with Le Monde newspaper that “my strategy is to focus our investments on around 10 titles which are leaders in their segment and where there is a strong potential to develop them online. Unfortunately, this means we have to dispose of around 10 others.”

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