Above is an image I’ve wanted to share with online readers since October 2022: our 25th anniversary montage. (You can access an even bigger one here.) While one appeared on the day of our quarter-century, this version, with accompanying text giving more context to each cover, has only appeared in print so far, necessarily spread over two pages. Once we removed the overlap that was needed for print, there’s a bit of a collision in the type that wasn’t on the original. Other than that, it’s a fun glance back at the print editions, which actually began seven years after the online one.
I kept saying how Yahoo! Internet Life had become the first print magazine to have originated on the web, but is that really true? I may be too humble for my own good sometimes. From what I remember, Yahoo! Internet Life was a magazine about the web that happened to have licensed the Yahoo! brand, but couldn’t be said to have come from it. Wikipedia agrees. It wasn’t a web directory, for instance; the magazine didn’t share the website’s sections. Cover up the masthead and you’d be hard pressed to know that it had anything to do with Yahoo!.
I really should be proud enough to say Lucire was, to my knowledge, the first website to diversify from web to print, and of course, for the sake of accuracy and truth, I’m happy to be corrected.
We certainly got a lot of press at the time, though no one really mentioned that this was a pioneering move. When I did it, that wasn’t what was going through my mind. What was going through was a belief that this had to be done. I don’t know if you’d call that a creative impulse or a firm self-belief, but anyone in the creative industries will recognize it. Whatever it was, many people tried to take advantage of it and of our company, which is why we became so much more careful in the 2010s. Succeed, but do so quietly and celebrate among yourselves.
What I also can’t answer is why there’s a pull for folks with law degrees to publish print fashion magazines. Arthur Turnure and Condé Nast wouldn’t have been the sort of people you’d expect to go into fashion publishing if you looked at their CVs. While not in the same league, neither am I. But I know this is way more fulfilling than practising law.
I probably could and should have done more press with Lucire KSA’s launch in 2018, but then we got so stuck in to doing the monthlies and were having a lot of fun. I also didn’t want a re-emergence of any of the users who reared their heads in the 2000s.
I’m so proud of what this team has managed to achieve under often difficult circumstances, and I thank them all for their hard work and creativity. This is a history to be proud of, both the tough years and the glory ones.
Jack Yan is founder and publisher of Lucire.