WSJ's launch... The Observer's New Glossy... A Solo Michelle Obama

The daily journalists at The Wall Street Journal have gotten a rude welcome to the slower pace of a quarterly glossy.

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Tina Gaudoin and Robert Thomson

Photo By Marc Bryan-Brown photography

TIMING IS EVERYTHING: The daily journalists at The Wall Street Journal have gotten a rude welcome to the slower pace of a quarterly glossy. While the paper’s new magazine WSJ has an interview with Republican vice presidential nominee Alaskan Gov. Sarah Palin, the story is about her workout regime and doesn’t mention her as a candidate. Then there’s a story on Kate Moss and Sir Philip Green — but Moss gave the real scoop about her growing business empire to last month’s Vogue. And a story on the America’s Cup battle between Oracle’s Larry Ellison and Ernesto Bertarelli was extensively covered in Sunday’s New York Times.

Oh well — that didn’t stop Journal editors from boasting about their new baby at Wednesday’s unveiling. “This being the convention season, histrionics are the order of the day,” said Journal managing editor Robert Thomson. Blown-up panels of the magazine’s cover and inside pages were covered in a cloth that was then ceremoniously removed. There was a silence, and the magazine’s editor in chief, Tina Gaudoin, told the audience of 60-odd journalists: “I think that’s the point at which you’re all meant to clap.”

The Journal and its newish owner, News Corp., seem to have spared no expense for the rollout of the magazine, which has already included a global, multicity “road show,” for advertisers and other interested parties, and will stretch to several launch parties — New York’s is this Friday and Europe and Asia will follow.

Other articles in the launch issue include a well fashion shoot styled by Sarajane Hoare and photographed by Michel Comte, with fashion credits consigned to the back of the book. There are several jewelry stories, and a short feature called “Poochi Gucci,” about luxury dog accessories.

Thomson brought the red meat by hinting at a much-covered feud between his newspaper and The New York Times and its T supplements. He mentioned, but did not name, another newspaper that he said regards its magazine as “a house of ill repute,” and said the Journal, by contrast, welcomed its glossy magazine. Thomson said that the magazine had been so well received by the advertising community — it carries 51 advertisers, 19 new to the Journal, for a total of 104 pages in the issue — that the Journal was contemplating expanding more into magazines, though when pressed he said the thinking was not advanced. Advertisers in the launch issue include Audemars Piguet, Hermès, Burberry, Dior, Dolce & Gabbana and Versace, as well as some real estate and travel advertisements.

— Irin Carmon
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