Is the Monocle Magazine a high quality magazine

Print journalism: Zeitgeist made of paper


Read on one side

The booklets are laid out on dark wood like fine designer goods. The customers prayerfully wander around, stop and leaf through the pages. Do you go into the store Do you read me? in Auguststrasse in Berlin-Mitte, it seems that these are particularly good times for printed magazines: narrow ribbons that look like small editions and fanzines are stacked on the displays, but also thick readers and international glossy magazines.

Monocle, the international society magazine of the English-Canadian magazine guru Tyler Brûlé, is on display in a large pile, as is the American one Vogue or the elitist new Yorker. In between and next to it are design magazines with flowery (A magazine about places) to unclear names (Cornucopia), which are less well known, but hardly less valuable.

This rich sight is astonishing - the magazine publishers complain loudly about falling income, and the end of print journalism is not only celebrated in malicious blog posts about "wood media". But this is still very much alive and is looking for new ways and niches - many new magazines have emerged in recent years, often subcultural and independent of groups.

The interest in the printed word was also demonstrated by the lively audience at the three-day Berlin artist book fair Miss Read, which took place for the second time in September - and already had 50 exhibitors.

When looking at the smart and beautiful, often not very cheap and very sophisticated magazines offered by stores such as Do You Read Me ?, ProQm and Motto in Berlin, or exceptional publishers and Sautter + Lackmann in Hamburg, the question arises: Is it okay? Readers even bother with the content?

Does someone actually read a 300 page magazine like the current issue of Culture and ghosts (12 euros) with intellectual to cryptic contributions about drugs? Or are these magazines actually bought mainly for reasons of style, as beautiful objects that are decorative and, above all, visibly placed on the coffee table?

Jessica Reitz from Do you read me? says: "Most readers are interested in the content. Good photo series, intelligently written articles are essential, but of course emphasis is also placed on good design, implementation and feel. The magazine was yesterday - most of the publications that we include it in our range, want to be read. "

Print magazines, says Julia Boeck, the Berlin district magazine Wedding (6 euros) are collector's items that find their way onto the bookshelf: "You can read them again and again. When you pull them out after years, you experience the zeitgeist and attitude towards life of a generation." But how did you come up with the idea of ​​devoting a magazine to the unhappy Wedding?

Axel Völcker, editor and art director of the magazine, says: "When I looked out of the kitchen window of my ground floor apartment in Weddingen, I saw a huge scaffolding planted with flowers and had the idea of ​​designing a magazine that authentically contained the little stories of everyday life in the big city in the district represents. " The concept is well received: The 5000 printed copies are quickly sold out every time.