For the moment, there is really the only thing at stake with the launch of The Wall Street Journal‘s expanded weekend edition this Saturday: Was this the sort of newspaper that you or (perhaps more importantly) one of your lady friends might like to spend some time with? Jack Shafer gets to the heart of the matter:
I know nothing about these topics, so at my request, a woman I know whose editorial judgment is spectacular gave “Off Duty” the three-minute page-through to determine whether it should go into the recycling or be set aside for Sunday reading. She ruled that it be placed in the Sunday pile. There is no greater honor in American journalism.
Mr. Shafer says that its best not to judge new launches until after a few issues. But with that in mind, we were a little surprised to see the redesigned WSJ weekend frontpage banner in print. It’s very busy: goldenrod yellow, magenta, red-white-and-blue and two kinds bold type! It’s a lot. As Mr. Shafer wrote, “The new design isn’t really eye-catching, unless calling attention to yourself qualifies as eye-catching.”