Posted on | April 18, 2012 | 18 Comments
The editorial staff of the influential gay lifestyle magazine Out is being laid off with one month’s severance as of Friday, Capital has learned.
But according to Out editor-in-chief Aaron Hicklin, it’s more complicated than that.
Hicklin said he will hire back an unspecified number of editors on a contract basis into a new company he is founding called Grand Editorial. It will operate the magazine as a contractor for Here Media, sister company of Regent Entertainment Inc., which acquired Out in 2008.
Hicklin told Capital there will be no reduction in the frequency of the magazine or other major changes to the content.
“This was not a cost-cutting measure,” he said.
“Not a cost-cutting measure”? Could it be — just throwing this out there as a possibility — that Hicklin’s “complicated” scheme to replace a salaried staff with freelance contractors is an attempt to avoid providing health insurance coverage and other benefits?
Would I be correct in guessing that Out‘s offices are located in New York City, a jurisdiction notorious for its onerous regulations? Would I also be correct in guessing that Out has a lot of middle-aged staffers whose existing health problems and potential future risk for such problems have made the cost of insurance coverage extremely expensive?
Just askin’ questions . . .