Newsweek Announces It Will Discontinue Its Print Version, Matt Drudge Does an End-Zone Dance

According to Newsweek’s online site, The Daily Beast

We are announcing this morning an important development at Newsweek and The Daily Beast. Newsweek will transition to an all-digital format in early 2013. As part of this transition, the last print edition in the United States will be our Dec. 31 issue.

Near its headline to the announcement, the Drudge Report posted a 1998 Newsweek cover, which displayed a photo of Monica Lewinsky. Beneath the Newsweek cover was the headline “R.I.P.”

Some readers will recall that Newsweek’s Michael Isikoff was the first reporter to learn of Bill Clinton’s affair with Lewinsky. However, editors at Newsweek sat on his story and delayed publishing it. Matt Drudge, after learning about the story, posted it on his web site and out-scooped Newsweek (His book hints that he learned of it through Lucianne Goldberg, whom, it appears, learned of it from Linda Tripp). 

The Drudge Report, at the time virtually unknown, rocketed to fame. An inside source once told me that folks at Newsweek despised Drudge after he published the story. 

If Newsweek editors hadn’t balked at publishing the Lewinsky story, I suspect that the Drudge Report wouldn’t exist at all today. At a minimum, its audience would be a tiny fraction of the approximately 50 million hits it receives each day.

Newsweek editors might ponder how much more viable their magazine would be if they hadn’t sat on the Lewinsky story in 1998.

  1. Southern Pessimist

    It’s funny that just before I read this I watched the opening 20 minutes of Hating Breitbart that is at Breitbart.com and I was remembering meeting him at the NRO cruise in 2010 (I was fortunate to sit next to him at dinner one night). In one of his interviews on stage during the cruise he exploded in his usual fashion that he didn’t want to provide a counterbalance to the New York Times, he wanted to kill it, drive a stake through its heart and dance on its grave. In a way he already has. I don’t think anyone will miss Newsweek other than those people stuck in a waiting room without an IPad.

  2. flownover

    Three cheers for Matt Drudge !!!

    And don’t forget RefDesk.

  3. ctruppi

    I wonder how long they would have sat on a Lewinsky-type story had the POTUS been a Republican.

  4. KC Mulville

    I’m a former subscriber, back when Newsweek gave George Will and Meg Greenfield a column and I couldn’t get the Washington Post. 

    But now, I hope Newsweek is to mainstream media what Lehman Brothers was to finance.

  5. Gray Brendle
    Southern Pessimist: It’s funny that just before I read this I watched the opening 20 minutes of Hating Breitbart that is at Breitbart.com and I was remembering meeting him at the NRO cruise in 2010 (I was fortunate to sit next to him at dinner one night). In one of his interviews on stage during the cruise he exploded in his usual fashion that he didn’t want to provide a counterbalance to the New York Times, he wanted to kill it, drive a stake through its heart and dance on its grave. In a way he already has. I don’t think anyone will miss Newsweek other than those people stuck in a waiting room without an IPad. · 13 hours ago

    Edited 13 hours ago

    Funny, I don’t miss the print version of NEWSWEEK but I sure do miss Andrew Breitbart!

  6. Keith Rice

    Finally, a news week I can appreciate.

  7. Jimmy Carter

    That “dead tree magazine’s” demise was dropping the wrong adjective.

  8. Roberto

    Hmm, so Newsweek is now… a blog? That is something to think about. 

  9. Cuban Mike
    May the same fate befall the rest of the establishment media!   They are covering for Barry as blatantly as Newsweek covered for BJ Clinton. 
  10. Jerry Carroll

    If it continues as before, Newsweek will find itself confined to a narrow niche market roughly congruent with the MSNBC viewership. If it is smart, it will offer a very large contract to Mark Steyn to haul in readers from the far larger center-right audience. But it won’t. The left treasures a monoculture where view are reinforced rather than challenged.

  11. Joan of Ark La Tex

    Less garbage to pick up? Sounds good to me. The latest edition really hurt my eyes when I was standing in line to pay for my groceries. The cover basically said” Obama the next Reagan”. I almost gag right in front of the cashier. 

  12. Humza Ahmad

    I’m imagining Matt Drudge doing the end zone dance from this episode of the Cosby Show (fast forward to 9:40)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meS2bNJ2VfE

  13. Joseph Paquette

    Print magazines, will become a 2 class system.  Tabloids and ‘snooty’/ ‘artsy’ magazines.   The rest will go to tablet and on-line subscription. 

  14. HVTs

    From the online announcement:

    Newsweek Global, as the all-digital publication will be named, will be a single, worldwide edition targeted for a highly mobile, opinion-leading audience who want to learn about world events in a sophisticated context.

    Isn’t this the problem Newsweek has? Playing to the “opinion-leading audience” rather than simply telling a much broader audience what is actually happening?  Inserting the Boston-Washington corridor’s “sophisticated context” into the news, rather than just reporting it to a wider subscription base?

    The editors seem to have learned nothing from the demise of their print version and instead are simply transferring their broken business model to the internet.  I’ll give it 18-24 months before “all-digital” becomes “all gone.”