Hearst exec: editor's role must expand

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LONDON--The editor of the future will spend 30%to 40% of his or her time organizing conferences or exhibitions, editing online products, overseeing brand extensionsand other tasks not associated with editing a print magazine,says Cathleen Black, president of Hearst Magazines.

"The editor of the future is going to have to get excitedabout doing things in addition to editing a magazine," Ms.Black said in London at the Periodical Publisher Associationconference Magazines '99 and Business to Business conference.

The New York-based executive cited the examples of HouseBeautiful magazine, which launched a line of paints and Cosmopolitan magazine's large consumer shows. Although othermagazines executives can oversee such products, the editormust take a crucial role because they affect the core brand."These events generate an enormous amount of free publicity.''

Editors aren't always quick to adapt to this new publishingenvironment. Of Hearst Magazines' 16 main titles, most haveor are about to have their own Web site. "There has been a varying degree of interest in these Web sites shown by the editors, but in the last six months they've begun to feel thisis the future," Ms. Black says.

One of the reasons Hearst editors have shown an interestis that income from Web publications no longer goes into acentral corporate fund, but are channeled back into theprint magazines, she says.

Copyright May 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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