Can I Change The Magazine Industry? Probably Not! But I will try!

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Some of my personal magazine collection from the last three months!

Some of my personal magazine collection from the last three months!

Cosmopolitan magazine and Glamour magazine were spread across my kitchen tables and with their flashy fashion pages opened up and advice pages folded down by my mother and aunt. At the age of 13 my favorite movie “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” came out and I became obsessed with women’s magazines and the idea of being a women’s magazine writer like Andy Anderson in New York City. I have been after that goal for eight years.

As a devoted magazine reader and future writer I subscribe to many women interest magazines and read every page diligently. But, as a college senior I find the many of those pages and advice columns just down right unrealistic. While the magazine industry is a hard one to break into, I bet change is even harder. In an ideal world, I want to see beauty products and clothing that I can afford on a college budget. I want to read advice columns that empower me and tell me to be motivated and driven in whatever comes my way. It’s surprising that I read one serious column in my entire $3.99 issue of Cosmopolitan.  I would love to read more that focus on the issues that affect me. For example: Planned Parenthood, President Obama’s healthcare plans, President Obama’s goals on college debt, and even how gas prices are affecting other women’s budgets. But, can that happen? It didn’t for Andy Anderson. The editors need to focus on their advertisers such as the advertisers whose beauty products are destroying the rain forests the author Hilary Rosner and her friends were trying to write an article about. Rosner discusses that tough issues are a rare breed to be discussed and published in the beautiful glossy magazine pages.

 I want to see women that have a body rather than stick thin.  In about a year I will have over $25,000 college loan debt and affording anything will become extremely difficult. Therefore, My topic will explore the media representation of the economy and of women in the highly glamourized women’s magazine industry.

Madonna Pre and After Photoshop: Too Far?

Madonna Pre and After Photoshop: Too Far?

Are these women even real? Photoshop can completely change the appearance of a women including weight, height, skin color, and even how far apart eyes on a person are. I want to get back to reality and sell what is real, not what advertisers think is real. I want to be able to afford the best skin care makeup and non-damaging shampoo that will not cost me more than $10. I want to explore the magazine industry and their unrealistic approach to our United States economy.

But how can women represent reality when they are not the ones maintaining the pages of THEIR OWN magazines. Men are taking over the advice pages giving women detailed advice on how they want to see women behave and act. Men are primarily the doctors managing the advice pages with questions and answers. Cosmopolitan even has an iPhone/android phone application that is JUST FOR MEN! This is outrageous. I would love to have an advice column on how to manage my budget filled with rent, college loans, car payment, high gas prices…etc.

Drastic diets and eating disorders are being developed by women who see unrealistic views of models wearing size 000 jeans. Why can’t advertisers yell at the magazine industry? Oh yea, that is right they are getting millions upon millions on scruntizing my looks and trying to make me feel better by buying their product.

Women’s Magazines and advertisers are slowly forgetting the older audience as well. They are so focused on the younger generation. Let’s be honest: mothers are paying for the tanning lotion that will make their daughters tan and sexy at the prime age of 9. It’s absurd how much is happening to the women’s magazine industry and I want to try my hardest to change it. Hey, it probably won’t happen but at least I am realistic unlike what I am reading at the gym trying to lose that extra pound.

 

Check out a male comedians take on the industry: Even better, he is Australian!

About jchambers12

Jackie is a junior at the University of Mass. Amherst. She is currently working towards her Journalism and Communications degrees. She is minoring in Woman Studies.Her plans for the future are to become a magazine writer for either People, Cosmo, or Vanity Fair. In her spare time Jackie enjoys hanging out with her friends, watching television, and traveling.

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