Despite pandemic, 60 new print magazines launched in 2020

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By Keith J. Kelly, New York Post

The number of new print magazines launched in the US dropped by more than half in 2020 to 60, compared to 139 a year earlier.

But in a surprise move, the pace of new launches accelerated in the second half of the year with food, home and fitness titles proving the most popular.

The data comes from Professor Samir Husni, founder of the University of Mississippi’s Magazine Innovation Center at the School of Journalism and New Media, who bills himself as “Mr. Magazine,” and has been tracking the number of new US magazine launches since 1978.

“Considering all the problems with the pandemic I think it shows there was still a lot of interest and vitality in magazines,” he said. “It’s almost a miracle that there were 60 new launches.”

Like in all areas of our lives, the pandemic had a tremendous impact on the titles that were launched with food, fitness, home and mags tied to celebrity influencers dominating the field. “People still believe there is a need for print,” Husni said. “People are stuck at home, bombarded by bad news. They are looking for diversions,” he said.

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