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Sorry to see you go, Chris

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  • Sorry to see you go, Chris

    I have heard the bad news about Chris Lewis leaving. Having worked with Chris on my lead article this past winter, I know that he is a capable, talented professional who cares a great deal about the magazine and about maintaining its quality and integrity. Hence, while I was disappointed to hear of his leaving, I know it's in keeping with his character. I respect a man who's willing to go to bat for his principles.

    Eric Weider, I hope you're reading this. There are lessons to be learned from this situation. That someone the caliber of Chris would leave your company due to disagreements with the unfortunate direction your staff wants to take cries out for a response. You've heard the same complaints here about Military History, and you've asked for patience. I have heard little since then to suggest that the readers are happy with the "new direction" of Military History, and I can tell you without hesitation, both as reader and as contributing author, that if the same "new direction" continues to be taken with CWTI and America's Civil War, I'm done reading them, and I suspect most of your readers will be, too.

    This situation is akin to the "new Coke" fiasco of the mid-1980's. Coca Cola was losing market share to Pepsi, and decided to take Pepsi on in its own arena. Instead of attacking Pepsi, Coke introduced a new formulation that tasted just like Pepsi, and Pepsi--for good reason--made hay with the situation, arguing that its product was so good that Coke had copied it. Within a matter of a couple of months, Coca Cola had beaten a hasty retreat and had brought back the original formula as "Classic Coke."

    It's time for you to abandon "New Coke" and go back to "Classic Coke", or else I really fear that there will be no magazines at all left for you to sell.

    The ball's in your court.

    And good luck to you, Chris Lewis. Wherever you end up, I wish you well, and I respect your integrity.

    Eric
    "If you want to have some fun, jine the cavalry"

    Maj. Gen. James Ewell Brown Stuart

  • #2
    Eric I appreciate your feedback.

    Regarding Military History we had some normal bumps early on. But for the record our August issue was one of the best selling issues of this magazine in a long time. And personally I think the Sept issue is better still. If you have read the recent Sept issue I would welcome your specific constructive feedback.

    Regarding Civil War Times I won't comment publicaly on Chris' resignation because it wouldn't be appropriate for me to do that. But you can assume that as is usually the case there is more than one side to the story.

    Regarding America's Civil War I am surprised that you are critical of the direction of this magazine. Dana Shoaf and his team have been doing superb work on it and it is reflected in the sales which are up 20% in the last year. We are getting an abundance of positive feedback. Have you seen the latest issue?

    In any event...I always welcome feedback. It is sincerely appreciated.
    Publisher
    Armchair General Magazine
    Weider History Group

    Comment


    • #3
      Contrary to the silly musings on a certain Civil War blog...the company that owns the National Enquirer does not own the Weider History Group.

      The parent company of the National Enquirer and Star magazines is American Media. They own a publishing company my family used to operate called Weider Publications. That company published fitness magazines like Shape and Men's Fitness.

      Weider History Group and American Media are not affiliated in any way...and the silly theories that I have a strategy to dumb down the history magazines to appeal to the likes of National Enquirer readers is just that...silly!

      We are 100% dedicated to producing the best history magazines in the world. If you don't like them I can respect that... but please...why attribute all kinds of crazy motives to me?

      Not everyone is going to like everything we are doing...but making up crazy conspiracy theories doesn't make you look that credible either.

      Here's the bottom line...if you like our magazines...buy them. If not...don't. Please feel free to express your criticisms. If they are serious and constructive you can bet we'll read them carefully. We don't think we're perfect.
      Publisher
      Armchair General Magazine
      Weider History Group

      Comment


      • #4
        Mr. Weider,

        I will admit to early on being one of the ones who questioned new directions being taken with the magazines - but as I get more information about what has been taking place, I'm nothing but excited about it. Folks have certainly been taking some shots at you and the company, and making certain assumptions - but I think that can be chalked up to the "whole story" not being out there. I certainly don't know it all, but from what I have heard I've become very positive about what you've been doing and what changes may be coming.

        With Dana now at the helm of CWT, you now have huge talent and dedication at the top of the granddaddy of all CW publications. A better choice couldn't have been made. When Chris left, if I knew your home address I would have showed up and begged you to hire Dana on as editor

        Congratulations, Eric, on what you've been doing so far. I wish nothing but the best for my old friend Chris, but sometimes changes have to be made for the better of all. I look forward to the great things to come for all your publications and being a small part of it as a contributing author.

        J.D. Petruzzi

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks very much for the encouraging words J.D.

          We think the world of Dana and couldn't be happier than to have him accept this very important position as the new editor of Civil War Times.

          Your vote of support means a lot!
          Publisher
          Armchair General Magazine
          Weider History Group

          Comment


          • #6
            Eric,

            I echo JD's sentiments. Dana's a great guy, and I know he will do an outstanding job.

            And he's going to leave a large pair of shoes to fill over at ACW.

            Eric
            "If you want to have some fun, jine the cavalry"

            Maj. Gen. James Ewell Brown Stuart

            Comment


            • #7
              You ain't kiddin'. Did you know that Dana has size 13 feet? When he goes battlefield stomping... he really goes stomping... and I mean stomping...

              Eric (Weider) - too many dang Erics around here - you're more than welcome, and I think you're going to see more positive sentiments soon. The true measure of change is results, and I believe that when folks see more of what you've been doing, everyone will be behind you.

              Everyone has to be behind Dana. Can't stand in front of him... not with those feet...



              J.D.

              Comment


              • #8
                Picture Editor, "America's Civil War"

                Eric and J.D., I'm leaving it up to you guys to find me an appropriate editor, asap.

                Send all outstanding possibilities, right away!

                I'm extremely happy for Dana and CWT, but no one can replace what ACW has just lost!

                Lori

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hey Lori Lou!



                  Well, I could always fill in. Or, why don't you be Editor and I'll be picture editor? That way you could do both jobs, and I'll just drink coffee, eat donuts and collect a paycheck.

                  It's a thought

                  J.D.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hmm? Let's see, J.D.

                    1). Drink coffee
                    2). Eat donuts
                    3). Collect a paycheck

                    That's already three jobs. You won't have enough time to be my picture editor!

                    Help!

                    Send me a qualified, happy-go-lucky, knowledgeable, fun-to-work-with, never-qustions-Lori, Editor.

                    Soon!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      You won't have enough time to be my picture editor!
                      My point exactly!

                      Ok, ok, I'm your man. I'll see you Monday morning at 8 am (Eric - please have my name painted on the Editor's door by then).

                      Do I get my own parking spot?



                      J.D.

                      Comment

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