Magazine article Marketing

ASA Has a Tough Job to Do Weeding out the Shysters

Magazine article Marketing

ASA Has a Tough Job to Do Weeding out the Shysters

Article excerpt

Daily Telegraph readers should skip to paragraph five. Everyone else, please read on.

In the aforementioned daily organ a couple of weeks ago, Nicholas Coleridge - he of Conde Nast Publications and author of many fine literary works - gave the Advertising Standards Authority a right drubbing.

Nick (as I shall call him because we are, or anyway were, old chums) had claimed that Tatler was the oldest published magazine around and the ASA had asked him to prove it. Nick sent the ASA a brief history of Tatler and thought that would be the end of the affair. However, the ASA was not so easily appeased. It asked for more information.

Nick felt its questions were bureaucratic, unnecessary and daft, and that was the gist of his Telegraph article, which was rather longwinded but undeniably entertaining. It was also a wonderful plug for Tatler, in a newspaper which goes straight to the heart of the magazine's market. That wily young Nick never misses a trick.

(Telegraph readers rejoin here.) The ASA was concerned because Tatler has, it transpires, frequently ceased publication for long periods during its chequered history, and over the years it has been owned and relaunched by a plethora of different publishers.

So is today's Tatler, the ASA enquired, truly the same publication as the one that Sir Richard Steele launched on April 12 1709? Or is it a different publication, which happens to have the same name? And if the latter, can it justifiably claim to be the oldest magazine around? …

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