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Ebony magazine CEO says March issue missed due to rate dispute with advertisers

(March 15, 2015) For what is believed to be only the second time in its 69-year history, Ebony magazine unexpectedly missed the release of a monthly scheduled issue. The March 2015 edition has been re-dated "March-April" as a result, said Johnson Publishing Co. executives, of a dispute with some advertisers over their contracts. News of the missed issue first appeared Friday, March 13th in Journal-isms column by Richard Prince on MIJE.org.

CEO, Desiree Rogers, told the column that the March issue of Ebony magazine was never published because the parent Johnson Publishing Co. was in a dispute with advertisers over rates. Ad contracts with many advertisers were set to expire in the first quarter of this year. A significant rate increase in Ebony's ad rates was announced during the fourth quarter of 2014, but apparently so many advertisers balked that the company was forced to suspend the March issue.

"Sometimes you have to make difficult decisions," Rogers was quoted by the column as saying. "You need a certain amount of advertising for an issue." Rogers said that now "one hundred percent of the clients have agreed to the new rates."

With a paid circulation of more than 1,250,000 according to the Alliance of Audited Media, Ebony is the nation's largest circulation magazine targeting African-American readers.


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