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USPS Changes May Affect Magazine Distribution

Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2018 at 2:41 PM

In the news: A recent report from the Office of the Inspector General hints at possible changes to the USPS's magazine and catalogue distribution system. What might this mean for magazines?

The inspector general of the USPS has recently called into question the effectiveness of the flats sequencing system (FSS), which handles magazine and catalogue sorting and mailing. Greg Dool of Foliomag.com discusses the recent IG report with Rita Cohen, senior vice president of legislative and regulatory policy at the MPA.

Cohen highlights some of the inefficiencies of the current FSS system, as well as the need for the USPS to reevaluate its pricing structure. Summing up the pricing problem, she says: "FSS costs six cents per mail piece, compared to two cents on the AFSM.... We've argued that we should not be the ones bearing the burden of changes the postal service put in despite our recommendations not to. Our mail has gotten more and more efficient; it's nothing we did."

Read more about the IG's report and Cohen's assessment of the FSS here.

Also Notable

BuzzFeed Reviews Launches

BuzzFeed recently launched its BuzzFeed Reviews site, which features reviews of various consumer products. Max Willens of Digiday.com writes: "The goal is to monetize BuzzFeed Reviews principally through affiliate commissions, though other revenue streams will include programmatic advertising and content licensing, where BuzzFeed might sell an endorsed product the right to use a BuzzFeed seal of approval in its marketing, or distribute the post with said endorsement to BuzzFeed's audience." Read more about the site here.

Digital Strategy Amid Leadership Change at Hearst

Earlier this month, Tony Silber of Forbes.com discussed the company's ongoing digital efforts with SVP and editorial director of Hearst Magazines Digital Media Kate Lewis. According to Silber, "Lewis' purview is large: All digital directors, a centralized newsroom, the editorial video team and the branded content team across 25 brands all report to her." In the interview, which was conducted right before colleague Trey Young was named president of Hearst, Lewis reflects upon her tenure at Hearst and some of the greater challenges of the digital publishing industry. Read it here.

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