50 YEARS: “NEW YORK MAGAZINE

We’re celebrating fifty years of New York Magazine with its Editor in Chief, Adam Moss.

 

TRANSCRIPT

> ONE OF OUR NATION'S MOST INFLUENTIAL AND ICONIC PUBLICATIONS IS MARKING 50 YEARS IN PRINT.

'NEW YORK' MAGAZINE HAS PRIDED ITSELF ON FEARLESS, OFTEN FUNNY AND UNAPOLOGETIC WRITING.

FROM FOOD, FASHION AND CULTURAL TRENDS TO HARD-HITTING FEATURE PIECES THAT HELD THOSE IN POWER INTO ACCOUNT, PUBLICATION HAS HELD A SPECIAL PLACE ON OUR NEWS STANDS FOR DECADES.

NEW BOOK FROM THE EDITOR, HIGH BROW, LOW BROW, BRILLIANT DESPICABLE.

50 YEARS OF NEW YORK.

WELCOME ADAM MOSS TO OUR PROGRAM.

NICE TO BE HERE.

I'VE BEEN A FAN OF THE MAGAZINE AS LONG AS I CAN REMEMBER.

BUT I'M ALWAYS FASCINATED BY HOW THINGS GET STARTED.

50 YEARS NOW, HOW DID 'NEW YORK' MAGAZINE GET STARTED?

USED TO BE A NEWSPAPER IN NEW YORK CALLED THE 'NEW YORK HERALD TRIBUNE' WITH A SUNDAY MAGAZINE CALLED 'NEW YORK' EDITED BY -- WITH FANTASTIC ART DIRECTOR AND PAPER TANKED.

CLAY AND MILTON RAISED THE MONEY TO BUY THE NAME 'NEW YORK' AND SPIN IT OFF AS ITS OWN MAGAZINE WITH ITS OWN WRITERS.

TOM WOLFE CAME WITH CLAY AND MILTON TO NEW YORK AND STARTED RADICAL CHIC, ONE OF THE MOST FAMOUS ARTICLES ABOUT THE BLACK PANTHERS AND LEONARD BERNSTEIN.

CONTENT IS CRITICAL, PACKAGING IS IMPORTANT.

WE'RE A VISUAL CULTURE.

HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT THE PROCESS OF DECIDING ON THE -- WHAT THE COVER IS GOING TO LOOK LIKE?

THERE'S A LOT OF FACTORS THAT GO INTO A COVER AND THEY'VE CHANGED A LOT OVER THE 50 YEAR HISTORY OF THE MAGAZINE.

FOR US NOW IN THIS ERA, FIRST IT HAS TO BE IMPORTANT STORY OR WHAT WE THINK IS THE STORY THAT COULD HAVE THE MOST IMPACT.

THEN IT HAS TO LEND ITSELF TO VISUAL REPRESENTATION AND EXPRESSION, POSTER-LIKE QUALITY WE AIM FOR.

DON'T ALWAYS GET THERE.

BUT OUR BEST COVERS ARE ONES THAT PEOPLE WANT TO SAVE OR THESE DAYS SHARE ON SOCIAL MEDIA.

HUGELY IMPORTANT.

THAT'S WHAT WE STRIVE FOR.

IT'S A TIME WHEN PEOPLE ARE ALWAYS TALKING ABOUT DOOM AND GLOOM FOR THE MAGAZINE INDUSTRY.

YEP.

AND YET 'NEW YORK' HAS MANAGED TO STAY RELEVANT, INCLUSIVE, COMPELLING FOR 50 YEARS.

BIG QUESTION IS, I GUESS THIS IS GOING TO REQUIRE YOU TO BE A LITTLE SELF-LAUDATORY FOR THE MAGAZINE.

BUT BIG QUESTION IS, HOW DO YOU DO THAT?

STAY RELEVANT FOR 50 YEARS, ESPECIALLY IN THIS ERA.

I THINK THE MAIN THING WE'RE DOING IS BUILDING ON THE ORIGINAL CLAY FELL KERR IDEA.

ORIGINAL IDEA WAS NEW YORK WAS NOT JUST A PLACE, A GEOGRAPHIC LOCATION, BUT ALSO AN IDEA.

NEW YORK IS -- HAS BEEN SUCCESSFUL EXPORTING ITS OWN IDEA OF ITSELF.

MOST OF THE CITIES IN AMERICA AND ALL OVER THE WORLD RESEMBLE NEW YORK IN CRUCIAL WAYS.

NEW YORK IS NOT JUST A PLACE REALLY BUT A GLOBAL POINT OF VIEW.

AND THAT POINT OF VIEW RIGHT NOW IS FASCINATING BECAUSE THE CITY POINT OF VIEW IS IN CONTEST WITH THE RURAL POINT OF VIEW IN SOME WAYS FOR THE SOUL OF AMERICA ITSELF.

VERY EXCITING, INTERESTING, YOU KNOW SOMETIMES TERRIFYING PLATFORM.

IT'S WHAT NEW YORK IS.

WE TALKED ABOUT, YOU LOOK AT SOCIAL ISSUES, CULTURAL ISSUES, POLITICAL ISSUES, PERSONALITIES.

WHICH GETS US AROUND TO CURRENT PRESIDENT.

IN 'NEW YORK' MAGAZINE, LOOKED AT DONALD TRUMP IN A LOT OF WAYS FOR DECADES NOW.

YES.

30 YEARS OR MORE, WHAT WAS ATTRACTIVE ABOUT HIM THEN TO PUT HIM IN FOREFRONT?

NEW YORK IS A PLACE WHERE OUTSIZED CHARACTERS ROAM.

AND DONALD TRUMP WAS ONE OF THEM.

HE MADE HIMSELF THAT.

HE WAS VERY EFFECTIVE IN CATAPULTING HIMSELF TO ATTENTION VERY EARLY.

HE'S A SHAMELESS ENTERTAINER.

HE ALWAYS HAS BEEN.

AND --

BY THE WAY, WHATEVER YOU THINK OF DONALD TRUMP, SUPPORTER OR NOT, YOU HAVE TO ADMIRE HIS ABILITY TO CREATE A PERSONA.

ABSOLUTELY.

ALTHOUGH IT'S HARD TO KNOW WHETHER IT'S PERSONA OR ACTUALLY HIM.

BUT YES, HE'S A SORT OF MAGNIFICENTLY EFFECTIVE PUBLIC PERSONALITY.

HE ALWAYS HAS BEEN.

SO AT BEGINNING, REAL ESTATE DEVELOPER, BRAZEN, WOULD SAY ANYTHING, WOULD INVOLVE HIS OWN FAMILY LIFE, HIS MARRIAGE, HIS AFFAIRS, DIVORCE, OVER AND OVER AGAIN THIS PATTERN.

PUT HIMSELF IN THE FOREFRONT OF NEW YORK LIVE AND MAGAZINE HAD A LOT OF FUN WITH HIM.

NEVER, OF COURSE, TOOK HIM SERIOUSLY.

REALLY IT'S DURING THE LAST FIVE OR EIGHT YEARS THAT THE MAGAZINE HAS HAD TO GRAPPLE WITH TRUMP HIMSELF AND ALSO WITH ITS OWN RELATIONSHIP TO TRUMP BECAUSE WE ARE DEFINITELY IMPLICATED ALONG WITH MOST NEW YORK MEDIA IN HELPING TO CREATE HIM.

AS YOU LOOK BACK AND THROUGH THE 50 YEARS, AND NOW LOOK FORWARD TO THE NEXT 50 YEARS, DO YOU SEE ANY SIGNIFICANT CHANGES ON THE HORIZON FOR 'NEW YORK' MAGAZINE AND HOW IT APPROACHES WHAT ITS MISSION IS HERE AND THERE?

I THINK ITS MISSION WILL STAY THE SAME, THAT'S NEVER VARIED IN HIS 50 YEARS.

FORMS OF STORYTELLING CHANGE, NOW EXPRESSING IN VIDEO, MULTIMEDIA, SOCIAL MEDIA, THE PLATFORM WHERE YOU TELL YOUR STORY CHANGES, THE MISSION DOESN'T.

AND I KNOW 'NEW YORK' MAGAZINE HAS BEEN SUCCESSFUL IN STAYING AHEAD OF THAT.

ONE OF THE PROBLEMS FOR PEOPLE IN THE MAGAZINE INDUSTRY WAS THEY WERE LACKING BEHIND IT, DIGITAL, JUST PUT THE STORIES BACK UP ON DIGITAL.

RIGHT.

WE SAW IT AS OPPORTUNITY.

OUR ATTITUDE ABOUT ALL THIS STUFF IS IT'S NOT A PROBLEM, IT'S AN OPPORTUNITY.

AND IT'S JUST MORE WAYS TO TELL STORIES.

FOR THOSE OF US WHO MAKE THE MAGAZINE, IT'S EXCITING BECAUSE YOU GET TO LEARN MEDIA ALL THE TIME.

WE'RE ALL LEARNING VIDEO, IT'S TOTALLY EXCITING, I DON'T KNOW WHAT WE'RE DOING BUT FIGURING IT OUT.

FOR 50 YEARS, GREAT STORYTELLING AND COMPELLING, CAPTURING THE IDEA AND IDEAL OF NEW YORK AND WE APPRECIATE YOU SPENDING TIME WITH US.

LOOK FORWARD TO THE NEXT 50 YEARS OF 'NEW YORK' MAGAZINE.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

YOU DO WELL.

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, The Peter G. Peterson and Joan Ganz Cooney Fund, Bernard and Denise Schwartz, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, The Ambrose Monell Foundation, Janet Prindle Seidler, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

The WNET Group | Media Made Possible By All of You

© WNET All Rights Reserved.

825 Eighth Avenue

New York, NY 10019

BBB Logo Charity Navigator Logo