Everyone Plays Nice in the aSmallMagazine Sandbox

ASmallWorld, the Harvey Weinstein–funded, invite-only Facebook for the globally “influential,” recently launched an online magazine written by members, for members and quite often about members, of which there are currently close to 400,000.

ASmallMagazine currently features a profile of Ivanka Trump with a photo (first published in Harper’s Bazaar) of Ms. Trump in a low-cut bathing suit and high heels pushing down on a jackhammer at a construction site; a guide to “Top Fame Gamers”—socials who have racked up the most media attention as measured by FameGame.com–like Derek Blasberg, Emma Snowden-Jones, and Byrdie Bell; and pictures of society ladies like Lauren Remington Platt and Lucy Sykes Rellie at New York Fashion Week.

Sabine Heller, the pretty 32-year-old editor in chief, has a background in marketing and PR; she’s also contributed to magazines like Purple and Tatler. Socialite and actress Serena Merriman is associate editor, social scribes Rebecca Guinness and Valentine Uhovski are listed as writers, and designers Sue Stemp and Holly Dunlap as well as publicist Kristian Laliberte have their own blogs in the magazine.

“Sabine knows all those girls. I think people generally find that stuff interesting—what society has been up to,” said Ms. Stemp, whose writing experience consists of a blog she’s kept on her own Web site. “It’s interesting to contribute because it’s got this select membership and it feels a little bit secret. In a way it makes it easier because you don’t have to waste time explaining certain things to people from the very beginning. They already get the lifestyle.”

The magazine does not strictly focus on parties and society members. Other sections include politics, travel, and philanthropy. (Most of the content is password-protected for members, but some of it has been syndicated to the Huffington Post.)

“When you have such a carefully selected demographic, it would be intuitive to feature yachtsmen cigars and polo, but that’s not what resonates for people,” said Ms. Heller. (Still, there is an article about a polo match recently played in New York City by Argentine stud Nacho Figueras.)

Ms. Merriman has been a devoted member of the social network since 2004. She has used the Web site to sublet her apartment and make travel arrangements, and when her brother needed to find a motorcycle on a trip to India, he was able to do so through the network.

Ms. Merriman, who does not have writing experience and was introduced to Ms. Heller by former Men’s Vogue editor Hud Morgan in October, likes this socialte safe space: “I like that no one can be anonymous so there isn’t an opportunity for unnecessary snarkiness or negative comments.”


  Everyone Plays Nice in the aSmallMagazine Sandbox