Long-time PR pros can be excused if they shed a tear or two following Time Warner’s decision to shut down Life magazine.
Long-time PR pros can be excused if they shed a tear or two
following Time Warner’s decision to shut down Life magazine.
In today’s splintered media world, chances are that only a handful of
people in the profession remember just how thoroughly Life dominated the
media scene half a century ago. Back then, a placement in the magazine
could make a PR person’s career.
’Life was our life,’ recalls Dan Edelman. ’It was before TV news, it was
before cable. It had ’voom’ value.’
Edelman still remembers how excited his bosses at The Toni Company were
in the late 1940s when he got them a major placement in the
It was such an accomplishment that he can still recall the cover of the
issue - it featured the president of Studebaker, a long-defunct
Tom Harris, another PR veteran who helped create Golin/Harris after
working for Edelman, remembers laboring in the late 1950s to get client
Sara Lee into Life. ’What he (Charlie Lubin, Sara Lee’s founder) wanted
most of all was a story in Life,’ Harris recalls.
After pitching the magazine’s Chicago bureau for years, Harris finally
got Sara Lee into a theme issue that Life called ’The Bounty of the
Harvest.’ Lubin’s reaction? ’His first comment was ’I think the butter
looks a little green,’’ Harris says with a laugh.