Earlier this month Window Media, the largest chain of LGBT newspapers in the US, abruptly went out of business. Although Window Media had been in financial trouble for a while, their employees had been told a possible reorganization or sale of the company was in the works, not a liquidation.
“We found out when two of the corporate officers were waiting for us when we got to work this morning,” said Kevin Naff, editor of The Blade, a 40-year-old paper that was one of the most important publications written for a gay audience. “It’s not a complete surprise. The abruptness of it was what was surprising.”
Employees at Southern Voice, an Atlanta-based gay paper also owned by Window Media, found their offices locked when they went in to work and a note posted on the door saying that the company had ceased operation. It told the workers to return in 2 days with boxes to collect their belongings.
The names of the Publications owned by Window Media are: The Washington Blade, Southern Voice, The Houston Voice, The South Florida Blade, David Atlanta magazine and 411 Magazine.
Luckily, a few of these magazine have already found ways to continue publishing. 411 Magazine will now publish under the name Mark's List Magazine, starting next month. And a new iteration of the Washington Blade, called The D.C. Agenda, will also launch in December. And most recently, I heard that in the effort to create a new gay publication to replace the Southern Voice, the Lloyd E. Russell Foundation, which was started by an Atlanta gay activist/businessman to help promote the GLBT community, gave a $12,000 matching grant.
As more news about these publications becomes available, I will be sure to keep you posted.