Print Deadline Comes Back to Bite New York Times Magazine

The closest thing to politics coverage this weekend is Jake Silverstein's introduction.

Arriving in this Sunday’s New York Times, a glossy magazine with no coverage of Tuesday’s election battle between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Instead, print readers will be greeted by this cover and special themed-issue content from six designers.

It’s a less than ideal situation, but as editor in chief Jake Silverstein explains in his Editor’s Letter, essentially unavoidable:

A little-known fact about The New York Times Magazine is that it is printed on the weekend before the one on which it is distributed. This means that the contents of this week’s issue were finalized several days before Election Day. You will find no direct reflections on the results of the voting in these articles. And yet, the uncertainty of the outcome at the time we published them suits the theme of this special issue: our current mania with redesigning, tweaking, optimizing, improving, refreshing and updating everything. In the age of branding, the quadrennial choosing of an American president has come to feel like an exercise in product relaunch, and both candidates-Hillary Clinton and the eventual victor, Donald Trump-each represented a new and unprecedented proposal for the face we would show the world.

We live in a world where the online availability of The New York Times somewhat negates the screaming need for a timely Nov. 11-13 weekend post-election insert. Still, some will argue that the magazine should have had a massive cover story essay ready for both a Trump and Clinton victory, and figured out another weekend for the Design Issue.