Dwell Publisher: ‘Closing Domino Was Not a Good Decision’

dwelloct09.jpgAs Condé Nast hunkers down for a McKinsey-style “optimization,” Michela O’Connor Abrams is critical of the publishing company’s decisions with regard to Domino, the young shelter magazine that was shuttered earlier this year. “I just thought that was tragic,” O’Connor Abrams, president and publisher of Dwell, told FishbowlNY editor Amanda Ernst in a recent interview. “There was an amazing brand with vitality, with all of the kinds of assets and the ability to be on many different platforms like Dwell. It clearly had a rabid base.” And the decision to bring in McKinsey? “Mystifying and troubling all at the same time,” said O’Connor Abrams. “I personally regard Condé Nast as probably one of the most envied and revered editorial houses in New York. I don’t know how you get a business model so wrong. Closing Domino was not a good decision.” She credits Dwell‘s endurance to a business model that relies less on advertising (and therefore on an artifically inflated subscriber base) and more on “charging the right fee to the reader,” which in the case of Dwell is now $5.99 per issue at the newsstand.

Previously on UnBeige:

  • Former Domino Editor Launches Online-Only Design Magazine
  • Condé Nast to Fold Domino: March Issue Will Be Shelter Mag’s Last
  • Chronicling the Suffering of the Home/Design Magazine Industry