Top Editors Are Among the Casualties

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NEW YORK ( -- Dennis Publishing laid off over a dozen staffers Sept. 24, including some of its best-known editors and executives. Among them were Blender's editor in chief, Andy Pemberton; Mark MacDonald, group publisher of Stuff; and Keith Blanchard, director of programming, who until a few months ago was Maxim's top editor.

Ad pages, newsstand sales down
Dennis' ad pages through August were down 7.5%, according to Competitive Media Reporting. Its once formidable one-two combination of men's titles Maxim and Stuff has eroded. For the first six months of the year, Maxim's newsstand sales fell 15.8%, while Stuff's fell 19.3%, and the title missed its rate base, or the circulation guaranteed to advertisers. Ad pages are down at both titles, too.

Editor Craig Marks will now run Blender. Michael Provus, Stuff's publisher, will run the business side of that title. (Unlike other Dennis titles, Stuff will be operate without a group publisher.) Mr. Blanchard's duties will be assumed by Dennis' editorial director, Andy Clerkson, a company spokesman said.

Around 275 staffers work at Dennis Publishing, a spokesman said.

'Difficult decisions'
In a prepared statement, Dennis' president-CEO, Stephen Colvin, said, "This week we've had to make some very difficult decisions to part company with a number of people, some of whom have been with us for a long time."

Some of the moves were somewhat unusual, because historically Dennis has not fired top editors such as Mr. Blanchard and Mr. Pemberton, but instead moved them into development positions, as it did with Mr. Blanchard and former Stuff editor Greg Gutfeld, who's now the editor of Maxim's U.K. edition.

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