The New Republic, known for its rather generally graphic- and photo-free layouts, is working on a major renovation of its look in print and on the web that aims to alter that perception. The NYT reports that the new magazine, which has seen its circulation fall from 101,000 to 60,000 in the last seven years, will debut March 19 on heavier paper and with a serious amount of graphics — original photos, cartoons and other visual elements. And after more than 90 years of publishing weekly, instead, it will arrive on newsstands and in subscribers’ mailboxes every other week. Meanwhile, TNR.com will offer video and other graphic features over the next few months.
The business plan set up for the magazine by new majority holder CanWest Global Communications calls for TNR to become profitable within three years — in large part because of revenue from the website, which will offer more premium content. The magazine also will try some new blog features as the presidential campaign heats up. The New Republic is still trying to live down the embarrassment last year when one of its writers, Lee Siegel, admitted to attacking his online critics under a pseudonym . He was suspended and his blog was shut down.