The president of Reader's Digest Association Inc. says The New York Times got it wrong when the newspaper reported that the widely read magazine was being pushed "in a decidedly conservative direction" by its publisher.
The Times story was published Friday, the same day that RDA announced that it would cut the Reader's Digest publication frequency from 12 times a year to 10. It also said it was gradually shrinking its advertising-linked rate base from 8 million to 5.5 million.
The Times story prompted a rebuttal from Eva Dillion, president of RDA. In an e-mail memo to employees, she wrote:
"In today's New York Times there is an article about Reader's Digest. The article in part suggests that the brand has decided to shift direction editorially. I want to assure you that that is not what is or has been planned, and that the strategy to embrace our core values can be misinterpreted.
To clarify, neither the magazine nor the company is going in any direction other than what we are doing now. Reader's Digest has always been about the values of home, family, community, optimism and country, and certainly our values today are more than ever in step with America, especially during these recessionary times as people focus on the "back to basics" of family and home. What we did with the relaunch and redesign of the magazine and websites was to go back to the roots that made this company great."
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