Sunday, April 26, 2009

Maine: Port City Life magazine sold

In the January issue of Port City Life, I wrote about the Maine newspaper industry, including the plight of Maine's largest newspaper chain, the Blethen Maine Newspapers, whose parent company had been negotiating to sell for months. Nearly four months later, the Seattle Times Company still hasn't closed the deal to sell its Maine newspapers, including what was once the state's newspaper of record, the Portland Press-Herald.

Ironically, it's
Port City Life that's just been sold.

On Friday, the Portland-based monthly announced it had just been acquired by the
publishers of Maine Home+Design magazine, Kevin Thomas and Susan Kelley, who intend "to reposition the magazine" with a "major relaunch" this September. Port City Life publisher and editor Laurie Hyndman will stay on as managing editor.

If, like me, you've been hoping somebody would step into the growing vacuum at the center of Maine's media landscape -- a place for substantive discussion of what's really happening in this state -- you're probably going to be disappointed by the new
Port City Life.

In a press release announcing the takeover, Thomas writes that in future the magazine will aim to "capture the beauty and excitement of living here" by highlighting Maine's "vital urbane culture [which]
transcends some of the typical stereotypes of this state."

The magazine," the press release states, "will focus on the people, places, and ideas that remind Mainers why they choose to live here. "

Good luck: that's already a
very crowded marketplace.

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