Interesting story in the Boston Globe this morning about Boston magazine, a sister publication to Philadelphia magazine, and their owner, Philly's D. Herbert Lipson. An excerpt:
Stories about turmoil at Boston magazine almost always invoke the name of its owner, D. Herbert Lipson, who is a looming presence on the Philadelphia scene, and well known for trumpeting his conservative politics. Even at 80 years old, Lipson remains in charge of Metrocorp and does not hesitate to voice his opinion about the magazines.
Both Metrocorp magazines, and several ancillary publications, have won a host of awards over the years and generated a steady stream of advertising dollars, making Lipson wealthy. At a company Christmas party five years ago at the Charles Hotel, Lipson proclaimed he was “backstroking in green,’’ according to someone who was there.
David Rosenbaum, editor of Boston from 1986 to 1991, said Lipson did not care much for editors, but tolerated them when profits were robust. “When the economy turns and it [the magazine] gets skinny, he figures the editor is an idiot,’’ he said.
And they often paid a price: A dozen editors came and went between 1975 and 2000.
Rosenbaum said Lipson frequently pushed him to be irreverent, “going after poor people, Democrats, the handicapped, minorities,’’ he said. “He’s to the right of Attila the Hun. At least he was. I haven’t spoken to him since the day he fired me.’’
Metrocorp’s 2009 revenues have fallen 10 percent to 15 percent from last year, according to David Lipson Jr., president of Metrocorp and Herb Lipson’s son.