No more paper Playboys

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No more paper Playboys

#1

Post by 5829 »

No more paper Playboys

Playboy Magazine Is Closing Down, Probably for Good

https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/03 ... -good.html

Playboy has announced that it’s closing down its flagship magazine for the rest of 2020. It seems unlikely, given the wording of the announcement and the state of print magazine-making, that it will ever return. It’s not a surprise, exactly — its circulation and advertising drooped long ago, accelerating as the nudie pictures for which it was celebrated became available everywhere for free. Hugh Marston Hefner, its founder/editor/latter-day reality-show star/loungewear enthusiast, died in 2017, as his faded empire contracted around him, and one got the sense that the magazine was kept going partly because nobody wanted Hef to outlive it.

Hard to imagine it now, but Playboy once felt forward-thinking and modern. Founded in 1953, it was a significant force in the loosening of anti-obscenity laws regarding the press. By the early 1960s, it was a huge success, soon expanding to open its namesake clubs all over the world. It also moved into TV with Playboy’s Penthouse (later Playboy After Dark), a late-night talk show of sorts starring Hefner and an array of celebrity guests. The magazine peaked in the early 1970s at a circulation, breathtaking to see now, of 5.6 million copies a month. The magazine’s licensing operation since then has put the signature rabbit logo on cocktail glasses, clothes, car accessories, and far more. Plus, of course, online porn.

Men (and some women) joked that they bought the magazine for the articles, even though the centerfold and its associated pictorials were, of course, the main draw. The articles were, indeed, pretty good, even if Playboy tended to pay extremely well for the second-tier writing of first-tier talents. (The Simpsons once showed a parody of the magazine, called “Playdude,” bearing the cover line UPDIKE ON THE MARTINI.) But that’s also a little unfair: Playboy published good work by Ursula K. Le Guin, Joyce Carol Oates, and James Baldwin. At that part of the craft of magazine-making, Playboy was often great. Its lifestyle coverage, all that cocktails-and-great-stereo-equipment stuff, could be delicious as well.

Of course, that was not its reason for being, and it’s hard to concoct a truly feminist case for Playboy.“The Playboy Philosophy,” a series of published musings by Hefner that broadly expressed his worldview, argued that the shaking-off of Puritan and Victorian prudishness was good for women, good for the world, and all-around great for our mental health. That his version of this liberation was mostly defined by men, highly objectifying, and fundamentally skewed in its power dynamics — the very epitome of the male gaze — well, Hef basically shrugged those thoughts off, saying that women should just step up and go toe-to-toe with men. Donald Trump, in 1990, smirked from its cover, featured in a story he of course loved. A generation later, a Playboy model, Karen McDougal, began an affair with him after a taping of The Apprentice that took place at the Playboy Mansion, and the cover-up of her payoffs semi-directly led to his impeachment. Playboy did, arguably, present women as desirous creatures, not just passive sexual objects, and it argued for legalized abortion and the destigmatization of sex work. But its cover, for 60 years, bore the words ENTERTAINMENT FOR MEN, and that’s mostly what it was.
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Its latter days were, for the most part, not its best. Hefner’s daughter, Christie, took over in 1988, running the corporate end of the business for two decades and saving it from going broke. In the magazine itself, the 1990s and beyond brought unsettling degrees of airbrushing and surgical plumping to its golden-lit Playmates, who began to look like they had been molded out of some kind of creamy, poreless vinyl. A couple of tell-all books about the goings-on at Hefner’s Playboy Mansion left a sense that it was not a very happy place, and one where terrible things could happen. As the magazine became unsustainable in the 2010s, a brief attempt to gain new attention by eliminating its nude photography only accelerated the plunge; the full-frontal was brought back a year or so later, but that didn’t do much, although the photography got a lot better in this very last era. It was down to quarterly publication before today’s announcement.

Needless to say, Playboy, the brand, will continue. It’s a very big adult-entertainment business online. The magazine’s best standing feature, the Playboy Interview, remains pretty good, even in its seventh decade. (I recommend that you start with the one from February 1975, with Mel Brooks. According to the announcement, the Interview will continue to be published online.) And it remains a name and label that means something to a great many people, and that itself is worth money, because Playboy remains a huge licensing operation. Those spangled bunny baby tees, ubiquitous in Los Angeles boutiques, pay pretty well.
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A Sad Day Indeed.

#2

Post by Über »

I will spend a few moments here collecting my thoughts. It may seem petty at first, but this really is a huge deal for guys in my age range, Gen X...Playboy was a huge deal, and as a guy who grew up mostly without a stable father figure, as I started to come of age and girls became a big deal, the "stash" every young boy comes across at some points presents some options.

You had the Oui, Cheri, Hustler and of course, Playboy. I gravitated to Playboy out of the gate. When I was in 6th grade, someone brought a Playboy to school and had it in a folder. I'll never forget it, it was the Latoya Jackson issue. I never got a chance to see the pics though, I was knee deep in the articles. I never even noticed that my teacher was standing over me, that my entire class was looking at me. She snatched the folder off my desk, saw what was inside and immediately sent me to the Principal's office for an ass whipping. This is rural Mississippi, school whippings were in full effect.

My Principal, Mr. Cullen, knew me well. I was the star student of the school. He was my teacher before becoming principal. He should have paddled me out of the gate. But I reckon he was curious. A whipping didn't really phase me, but I really didn't want a paddling from Mr. Cullen. That shit was vicious, he had a piece of wood that must have been custom made, it had a grip and a strap he could wrap around his wrist. He also would go low, hits on the thigh hurt much worse than being hit on the butt. But, I digress...

Playboy saved my ass and opened my eyes that day. Mr. Cullen asked me why I had it, I told him I was reading it. He started to smirk a little, like "Wow, my opinion of this kid is really about to go to shit, I'm about to break his hip." After some back and forth about him trying to pry out of me that I had even glanced at the pictures, he asked me something like, "So you were reading it, huh?" Oh yeah, what did you read..?

I gave him the run down. Started with the contents. Dear Playboy. Tom Hanks interview. Made it all the way to page 71, to an article about an airline pilot smuggling drugs. There were things in there I definitely should not have been seeing at that age. But it was fascinating reading for a young man like myself.

Mr. Cullen was blown away. Fuck. I was a bigger nerd than he had thought. I think he felt sorry for me. No paddling. He let me go. I was an adult before I eventually saw the pictures in the magazine. When I was 18, I became a subscriber immediately. When I was able, I went back and collected some of the older issues. I have a few international issues. I agree with the above, when they stopped showing us girls next door, and started airbrushing, I really didn't care to see the centerfolds. I think I tapped out on them some time at the turn of the millennium.

As a Chicago native, I've always been especially proud of Hugh. I've been to the old Playboy mansion many times in Chicago. It's high class living now, but I love to drive by it. I love driving down Lake Shore Drive and seeing the old Playboy building, not far at all from where the old mansion was. I found out later on that my Grandfather was a member of the Chicago Playboy Club downtown. It was a huge deal and likely the first era I would visit if I had a time machine.

I knew that Playboy was in trouble, but I didn't want to believe it. What did it for me was when I got curious to see what happened to The Big Bunny, Hugh's personal jet. It has not been restored to it's former glory, sitting pretty in the Smithsonian, waiting for guys like me to walk through and imagine what it would have been like to roll with Hugh, look across the way and see Barbi Benton in her mini dress and Gogo boots...

The Big Bunny, or what's left of it, is somewhere in Mexico I think, ripped to shit and being used as some kind of makeshift school. It would be almost unrecognizable to anyone looking for it. That search made me so sad. I began to ween myself off Playboy, trying to brace myself for the inevitable. Whispers of Hugh selling the mansion in L.A. and being allowed to live there until he died. Are you kidding me? Hugh isn't going to live forever..? What the fuck kind of world is this..?

It's like nothing to believe in. I recently resubscribed to the "new" Playboy. I get my big fat quarterly issue. I don't even open them. Just read online. So sad. Sorry Hugh.

When my kid was about 8 or 9, I could tell he was really curious about the Playboy magazines I had neatly displayed on my bookshelf. I asked if he wanted to see one. Of course he said yes. I picked one, and opened it. I took a few moments to explain what the magazine was about, what it meant to me as a young man, how it wasn't an objectification of women magazine, but a glorification of women magazine. I told him what a Playboy man was to the best of my ability, and why I identified with the Brand. It was a moment. The world was changing. He was going to have a lot of things to wrap his mind around as a kid that I'm not sure I could have managed. Forget a magazine in a folder. What about a kid whipping out his fucking phone and showing him pornhub on the bus..? I'm glad I did what I did. My kid is pretty straight laced. And at some point, managed to get his hands on a vintage Playboy hoodie that he wears around the house. He just turned 18 a month ago.

I hope the evolution continues. RiP Playboy.
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Re: No more paper Playboys

#3

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Playboy cites coronavirus in decision to end print edition

BY JOE CONCHA - 03/19/20 09:15 AM EDT

https://thehill.com/homenews/media/4883 ... nt-edition

Playboy magazine announced that it will be ending its print edition, due in part to the coronavirus pandemic.

Playboy's CEO, Ben Kohn, said the decision to stop printing the magazine had been discussed for some time, but was expedited by the global outbreak.

“As the disruption of the coronavirus pandemic to content production and the supply chain became clearer and clearer, we were forced to accelerate a conversation we’ve been having internally: the question of how to transform our US print product to better suit what consumers want today … [and] engage in a cultural conversation each and every day, rather than just every three months,” Kohn wrote in an open letter on Medium.

“We will move to a digital-first publishing schedule for all of our content including the Playboy Interview, 20Q, the Playboy Advisor and of course our Playmate pictorials,” Kohn explained.

“It’s no surprise that media consumption habits have been changing for some time … [and] our content in its printed form reaches the hands of only a fraction of our fans,” he added.

Playboy had already reduced its publishing schedule to four issues a year.

Print offerings will still be made available in periodic special editions starting in 2021, according to Kohn.

“Print is how we began and print will always be a part of who we are," he said.

Playboy was launched in 1953 by Hugh Hefner, who died in 2017.

A year prior to his death, Playboy announced it would no longer offer full frontal photos of nude women, arguing that internet pornography had made such photos "passe," and that a less-risque offering would broaden its advertiser base. The magazine reversed course on the decision in 2017.

The magazine hit its peak in 1972, when its November edition sold more than 7.1 million copies.
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Love Is Respect - 1-866-331-9474

~~~ accept everything - Believe Whatever - TRUST NOTHING ~~~~
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
Never tell all you know...
Disclaimer: The opinions are my own. Nobody else wants them.

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