Saturday, April 3

I just finished reading Gary Wolf's "Wired: A Romance," a history of the magazine Wired. The guy who started the magazine, Louis Rosetti, was a visionary but also a fanatic, and he nearly destroyed the company he spent a decade building. But he and his wife came out of it wealthy people, as did their CEO, who exploited his situation to make millions. The story left me feeling that to be successful a person has to either treat their career as a life-or-death matter, or be ruthless in capitalizing on a situation. But, then again, it depends what counts as success. Was Wired successful in changing the media, as Rosetti hoped, or the world, as he dreamed? It doesn't seem so. Since 1998 Wired has been owned by Conde Nast, the owners of the New Yorker, Vogue, and Modern Bride. I don't know what the magazine was like before since I haven't read the early issues, but the book left me feeling that the magazine has lost its soul.


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