’TIS THE SEASON (1): Gruner + Jahr could have another lawsuit on its hands.
Three weeks ago, Diane Potter, director of consumer marketing, who admitted during the Rosie O’Donnell trial to having falsified circulation data for Rosie the magazine, “resigned.” But a business acquaintance of hers said categorically on Thursday that she was fired and that she is considering legal action against the company, which is headed by chief executive officer Dan Brewster.
This story first appeared in the December 5, 2003 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“She was definitely fired and she hired a lawyer, apparently a great white shark of a lawyer,” said the source. “She was told to do this repeatedly, that there were numbers that had to be met,” the source added.
As reported last spring, a person who worked for G+J and sat in on circulation meetings said that Brewster was involved in falsifying newsstand data. Secondary sources also alleged it would have been impossible to inflate newsstand data across a wide variety of titles, as G+J did, without Brewster’s awareness.
While an extensive paper trail showing the deception surrounding Rosie’s circ figures was introduced at the trial, evidence of Brewster’s involvement has been purely circumstantial and anecdotal. But that has not stopped industry observers from speculating about Brewster’s long-term employment prospects.
A G+J spokeswoman did not respond to a request for comment.
— Jacob Bernstein
‘TIS THE SEASON (2): There’s more upheaval at beleaguered fashion indie Nylon.
In the latest, sources said that art director Scott Williams was given the ax a couple of weeks ago as the title gears up for a redesign in an attempt to go more commercial. Associate publisher Wendy Buckley has also left the title, sources said.
In their place, editor Marvin Scott Jarrett has hired Patrick Mitchell, the award-winning designer who directed the original look behind Fast Company. He’ll be joined by former New York Times Magazine staffer Andrea Fella, who is the daughter of Ed Fella, a cult celebrity in typography circles.
“It’s the strongest team I’ve had,” said Jarrett. “I decided that it was time for next-generation Nylon. I wanted to tweak some things with design and the look and the feel of Nylon, for the book to take on a bit more sophistication and become a bit more grown up.”
Perhaps being more grown up will involve paying its new staffers in a timely fashion. Nylon was sued last year by a number of its contributors as well as its public relations firm, all of whom said that they had been stiffed by Jarrett and his publisher-wife, Jaclynn. Jaclynn Jarrett said at the time that the allegations were baseless and that the magazine had reached profitability. She has also said that the magazine has over 300,000 readers, more than Interview, Paper Magazine and V combined. Nylon’s competitors have said unanimously that those numbers are exaggerated. The title does not yet belong to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, though Nylon says in its current issue that it has applied.
BAZAAR’S LA. WOMAN: Call it fashionably late. After two years, Harper’s Bazaar has finally hired a new West Coast editor and it did so with a little help from Demi Moore, who introduced Glenda Bailey to her pal Jacqui Getty on a recent trip to New York. Married to Peter Getty and the mother of Gia Coppola (who’s auntie is Sofia), Getty’s known for lending her name and hip Hollywood guest list to charity events — as well as hosting her own high-wattage parties (her annual Halloween bash this time attracted Kate Moss, Mario Testino, Johnny Ramone and Roman Coppola). She’s also long been a video stylist and costume designer. As contributing editor, she will help produce feature shoots for Bazaar.
Meanwhile, Kristina O’Neill, former fashion features editor, has been promoted to fashion features director, filling a post that Jennifer Jackson-Alfano left in April.
— Rose Apodaca Jones