Norm Pearlstine Chats with the Observer

By Richard Horgan Comment

The transcribed Q&A is relatively brief. But when the interviewee is Time Inc. executive vice president and chief content officer Norm Pearlstine, much of it can be mulled.


In answering Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke’s second question, Pearlstine paints a wonderfully accurate and vivid picture. It’s something we too have noticed – in this case, truly, as non-media critics – at the neighborhood supermarket checkout line:

“If you stand at a checkout counter, you’ll see people on their tablets, on their cellphones. Traditional media has to respond to that…”

“Given the pace of change, it’s going to take a little bit of time. But this is an exciting time if you are willing to embrace the future. It’s not an exciting time if your only comfort is with what currently exists or used to exist.”

Expanding on Pearlstine’s observations, it’s amazing how “dated” the information on the covers of most of the magazines racked next to the 15-Items-or-Less line seem today as-compared to just a few years ago. Only a small number of feature-heavy, longer-lead publications like Vanity Fair still possess the allure of a possible impulse purchase.

Check out (pun intended) the rest of the Pearlstine Q&A here.

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