Magazines aren’t all fluff

By Melissa Mariani
February 19, 2009

Shannon Keough

Magazines are often overlooked as purely just picture books filled with tons of advertisements.

I think these assumptions that most people have about magazines are incorrect. There is no such thing as a useless magazine; it all depends on the reader and their interests.

The last thing you would expect to read in a feminine magazine, such as Cosmopolitan or Glamour, is news articles on serious topics. Sure, these magazines look like a bunch of wasted paper of advertisements and brainless celebrity gossip, but you will find real-life, heart-wrenching stories that can change your perspective on these so called fluffy magazines.

One copy can open your eyes to real life stories dealing with issues like date rape, drug addictions, the war in Iraq and health concerns, as well as much more.

I think magazines are such a good source of real-life as well as personal news stories that broadcasts and newspapers lack. Magazines definitely get overlooked for providing informative news stories.

Newsweek and Time give a good reputation to the word “magazine,” with their worldwide stories on poverty and coverage on big issues such as the Middle East crisis.

The most recent issue of Time magazine focused on the cover story, “Stem Cell Research.” The article is about a man who suffers from diabetes and started to research stem cells for the cure. The magazine article has a personal touch and explains how devastated he was when President George W. Bush stopped funding the project, and is now looking forward to President Barack Obama’s plan. He is hopeful that he will be able to continue looking for a cure that could change millions of people’s lives.

Whereas People magazine and other tabloids are the total opposite, they still create news. I believe stalking celebrities is not real news, but if you were to ask an obsessed fan I guarantee that they would disagree. I think the news in People magazine about charity events, newborn babies or a recent illness of a famous actress or actor are all forms of accurate news, but they should not be considered informative news such as articles that you will find in magazines like Time.

The great thing about magazines is that they cater to a specific audience. There are so many magazines out there for every topic and sport you can ever imagine. I think the personality of magazines make them a success.

I sometimes find myself flipping through the whole magazine and missing the good articles because they are hiding behind the advertisements.

I also feel that advertisements in the magazines can be a plus. These advertisements give the reader more time to evaluate the messages they are trying to portray.

Reading Sports Illustrated, I came across the popular Above the Influence advertisements, to endorse a “Drug Free You.” I noticed they are spotted not only in teen magazines but sports magazines as well.

I think this is a great way for promoting news in magazines through advertisements. I think it is excellent that they are trying to reach out to all different markets in their advertisements.

I feel people tend to forget even if a magazine doesn’t publish world news, they still are informing some sort of news to subscribers, whether it be hard-hitting news, gossip or advertising. It all depends on the reader, their lifestyle and what’s important to them.

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Melissa Mariani

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