In our perpetual search for great creative briefs, we were thrilled to see one in the New York Times Magazine this Sunday. Yes, the magazine has been redesigned and there are already countless posts, epitaphs and praises for the design, but that’s not what got us excited.
What struck us most was the creative brief for the new look. “Our overarching goal with this redesign is to monopolize as much of your Sunday as we possibly can,” says Hugo Lindgren in his Editor’s Letter entitled Everything but the Crossword, referring to the fact that every aspect, except the crossword, has been changed.
It’s an audacious goal that can only be evaluated by pots of coffee and hours curled up on the sofa or a park bench. The letter goes on to outline a foundation that had to be retained - long-form narrative journalism. The commitment to these roots is balanced by another success criteria about how to intensify the experience of reading a print magazine in an increasing digital world.
We applaud the audacity and focus of this brief. Similar to discussions with client, we’re less interested in if you love or hate the design. What we want to know is does it meet the brief? Has it succeeded in monopolizing more of your Sunday and delivered a more intense print reading experience?