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Adweek Regrooves

Adweek was started 33 years ago in a far, far different media world. Now it is remade for a new age and new opportunities.
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Magazines

Welcome to the new Adweek—not your father’s trade magazine.

In fact, my dad was in the advertising business and pored over the ad trades. He owned his own agency which he started with a buddy after the second world war. It was a creative boutique (although that notion didn’t yet exist) that he called Force, Inc., which, he explained to the trade press, was about the force of ideas over the force of arms—certainly an adman thing to say.

The curious thing is that he went into the ad game. There was nothing in his Depression Jewish background to have given him access or inspiration to join the nascent media revolution. That first generation of media guys must have been very much like the first generation of people in the digital business, making it up as they went along, lured by the cool and the opportunity. I remember the showmanship: my dad’s office designed as a Japanese tea garden, his glen plaid suits, the ardor that he brought to magazines, radio, and television. In the late ’70s, in the first whiff of the future, he was gobbled up by a big agency that in turn was gobbled up by an even bigger agency, which in turn…

This was when I came to New York and jumped into the media business. Adweek, too, started in the ’70s, a stylish and sassy alternative to the “other” ad trade. It was founded by Jack Thomas and Ken Fadner, in flight from Rupert Murdoch, who had grabbed New York, the most iconic magazine of the day where they worked, from Clay Felker, its famous editor (who would shortly come to edit Adweek).

Then came the ’80s, the most exciting and profitable decade in media history, which saw the rise of the great media empires: Murdoch, the Saatchis, WPP, Time Warner…

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