The magazine’s editor Tina Brown said that due to the ‘challenging economics of print publishing’ it has decided to become an Internet only publication .
She admitted that saying goodbye to the ‘romance’ of the printed word was hard but the status quo could not continue. Staff have been warned there will be redundancies ahead of the final edition on December 31.
The decision brings to an end the the publication of a magazine which was founded in 1933 with financing from the son of industrialist Andrew W Mellon. It has been one of the longest running magazines in American history, but in recent years it has struggled with declining advertising revenues. In 2010, Newsweek merged with news and culture website The Daily Beast and last year the print edition underwent a redesign in the hope of bringing in more readers.
The new digital version of Newsweek, which will be called Newsweek Global, will be available on the web and e-reader and tablet format on a subscription only basis, with some content made free.
In her statement Brown said: “Exiting print is an extremely difficult moment for all of us who love the romance of print and the unique weekly camaraderie of those hectic hours before the close on Friday night. But as we head for the 80th anniversary of Newsweek next year we must sustain the journalism that gives the magazine its purpose — and embrace the all-digital future.”
She added, “We are transitioning Newsweek, not saying goodbye to it. We remain committed to Newsweek and to the journalism that it represents. This decision is not about the quality of the brand or the journalism - that is as powerful as ever. It is about the challenging economics of print publishing and distribution.”
The decision means no more of the controversial front covers which Brown sanctioned of late. They included a picture of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, which was photoshopped next to a picture of Kate Middleton.