Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Rolling Stone

A coworker, a 41-year old mother of two with 18 years' sobriety, mentioned that she has a subscription to "Rolling Stone." That struck me as slightly but not ridiculously odd, so I looked up its demographics. On a lead-in page, I found the view of themselves they want to put out to potential advertisers.
Rolling Stone goes beyond just taking the pulse of youth culture.
Rolling Stone is the pulse of youth culture.
| |
Whether the subject is music, TV, movies or politics—over 12 million young Americans trust and turn to Rolling Stone every two weeks to keep them up on the subjects they care about most. Bold stories. Big interviews. Insightful commentary. All delivered with energy, passion, irreverence and a point of view that defines its audience.
Then I read the demographics of its readers.
I suppose if life expectancy is going to continue to rise, then having half of your readership over 35 can be considered "youth" culture, but it seems a stretch to this child born in 1953. Perhaps a portion of those older subscribers are buying it to put out in their waiting rooms. The only times I hear about RS is if they've just done some Top 1,000 Lost 45's of All Time, or are footnoted for some political piece heavy on assumptions and short on wondering if there is another possible POV.

They do seem to get actual modern artists on the cover, though. They're not crazy. They know all their readers, even the 11.4% that are 55+, want that.

I'm also wondering about that "other" category for race. There just aren't that many mixed-race people in America, unless they all subscribe to RS somehow. In a conservative publication, that would be "white people who are trying to screw with your data because they hate balkanizing Americans by race." But I don't think that's going to hold for Jann Wenner's crew. I'm guessing it's more like "white people who consider themselves minorities in spirit."

Though one should never rule out, for all ambiguous answers from any group,
that a considerable percentage may be "people who didn't understand the
question," or more succinctly: "Whoa. Dude."

1 comment:

Sam L. said...

My mind, it is boggled!