The New Statesman today (1 December) announced record monthly traffic to its award-winning politics and culture website. Together with its microsite citymetric.com, newstatesman.com registered 20 million page views in November 2015. Circulation of the magazine now stands at 32,400 – its highest since the early 1980s.
Editor Jason Cowley said: “Both editorially and financially, the New Statesman is in the best shape it has been for decades. Our web traffic is excellent for such a small team, and the magazine is growing in influence and reach, we are in profit, and we have several special projects – including high-profile guest edits and new microsites –planned for 2016.
“November’s record figures follow a redesign of newstatesman.com in August, which has enhanced our web presence. The new, cleaner, more stylish and mobile-optimised site is taking our journalism to an ever-growing online audience. Those who visit from social media, in particular, stay longer and read more.
“I’m particularly delighted by the quality and intelligence of our long essays, profiles and narrative reports. Since 2013, our coverage of the crisis in the Middle East and the rise of Isis has been especially notable because of the expertise and excellence of our contributing writers John Bew and Shiraz Maher, both part of the War Studies Department at King’s College, London. The New Statesman remains of the left, and for the left, but is much more open-minded and sceptical nowadays.”
Cowley’s award-winning editorship has seen the New Statesman, which was founded as a “weekly review of politics and literature”, recapture its reputation for fine writing and adopt a more plural, sceptical and unpredictable political position. In recent years the magazine has been a platform for a new generation of gifted journalists such as Helen Lewis, Laurie Penny, Rafael Behr, Mehdi Hasan and George Eaton.
The newstatesman.com team has been strengthened by the arrival of Stephen Bush as editor of the Westminster-focused Staggers blog; Anoosh Chakelian, formerly of Total Politics magazine; and Tim Wigmore, formerly of the Daily Telegraph.
Arts editor Kate Mossman’s much-praised online interview with Terence Trent D’Arby alone attracted nearly 3 million page views in October – many of which were from the US. Recent online political scoops include the release of private polls that first showed Jeremy Corbyn was ahead in the Labour leadership race (Stephen Bush was first to call the contest for Corbyn), the launch of the new group Labour Together, Frank Field’s call for Labour MPs to run as independents if deselected, and shadow cabinet member Michael Dugher’s attack on the Corbyn-supporting group Momentum.
The magazine’s celebrated contributors include John Gray, Rowan Williams, Andrew Marr, Suzanne Moore, Clive James, Tom Holland, Professor Brendan Simms, Chris Patten, John Bew, Germaine Greer, Shiraz Maher, Robert Webb, Jeanette Winterson, William Boyd, John Simpson, Robert Skidelsky, Nick Pearce, Simon Heffer, Jeremy Bowen, David Reynolds, Ali Smith, Ian Leslie and the former British ambassador John Jenkins. They join a team of regular columnists and critics, who include Will Self, Tracey Thorn, Laurie Penny, Kevin Maguire, Helen Lewis, Owen Jones, Peter Wilby, Jim Murphy, Ed Smith, Nicholas Lezard, Rachel Cooke, Craig Raine and Leo Robson. Grayson Perry, Russell Brand, Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer are the most recent in a series of high-profile guest editors of the New Statesman magazine.
Read this week’s Independent interview with Jason Cowley.
Notes to Editors
The New Statesman was founded on 12 April 1913 by the social reformers and economists Beatrice and Sidney Webb, with financial support from George Bernard Shaw and other members of the Fabian Society. From defying fascism and championing decolonisation under the long-standing editor Kingsley Martin to campaigning for nuclear disarmament, women’s and LGBT rights, and constitutional reform, the magazine has been a voice for progressive transformation.
Throughout its history, the New Statesman has remained committed to publishing the best writers and journalists. The roll call of great political and cultural writers who have contributed to the magazine includes H. G. Wells, John Maynard Keynes, Bertrand Russell, Paul Johnson, Julian Barnes, Virginia Woolf and Christopher Hitchens.
Previous guest editors of the New Statesman include the internationally renowned artist and free speech advocate Ai Weiwei, whose 2012 issue won an Amnesty International UK award for human rights journalism; Jemima Khan, now a contributing editor to the magazine; the artist Grayson Perry; the comedian Russell Brand; the former archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, whose 2011 issue caused a rift between Lambeth Palace and Downing Street; Richard Dawkins; and the former Labour leadership contender David Miliband.
newstatesman.com was redesigned by Sam Hall, Chris Boyle and Zoltan Hack, led for editorial by NS web editor Caroline Crampton, with input from NS design editor Erica Weathers.
citymetric.com and may2015.com were launched in 2014 by Progressive Media, the New Statesman‘s parent company, as part of New Statesman Media. Citymetric.com, edited by Jonn Elledge, explores the business of cities. May2015.com, edited by Harry Lambert, was dedicated to polling and analysis for the general election.
Jason Cowley is a journalist, magazine editor and writer. He became the editor of the New Statesman in October 2008. Before that, he was the editor of Granta magazine, a senior editor and writer on the Observer, and a staff writer on the Times. In 2009 and 2011, he was named editor of the year in the Newspaper and Current Affairs Magazines category at the British Society of Magazine Editors Awards. In January 2013, he was shortlisted for the European Press Prize’s Editing Award. The awards committee said: “Cowley has succeeded in revitalising the New Statesman and re-establishing its position as an influential political and cultural weekly. He has given the New Statesman an edge and a relevance to current affairs it hasn’t had for years.” He is the author most recently of a memoir, The Last Game (2009). His extended interview with the Chancellor, George Osborne, appeared in September 2015.
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