Plans calls for the magazine to become a subscription-based digital publication rebranded as Newsweek Global. Its current 1.5 million subscriber base – a decrease of 50 percent from its one-time peak of 3 million – will be given access to the digital edition. Some of Newsweek’s content will be available for free on the Daily Beast, which itself is entirely free and advertising-supported.
Historically, the weekly newsmagazines such as Time (founded 1923) and Newsweek (founded 1933) were designed to digest the news in a more thoughtful way than the headline-driven daily newspapers were doing in the first half of the twentieth century. I’m not sure that there is not a place for that in today’s publishing world, especially given the instantaneity of online platforms such as blogs and social networking sites. But I’m not sure how much value a digital-only Newsweek can offer either if it remains a general-interest publication. It’s the personalized nature of digital media that probably killed Newsweek more than the digital vs. print issue.