In other news, BUTT is actually willing to speak with me on the phone.
I’ve been mean to them in the past, but that’s only because I’m secretly obsessed. So when I read today’s report that the magazine would be taking a break, I freaked out and thought of all the other gay publications, like Genre, Freshman and Men, that cried, "Be right back!" when they meant, "We’re folding."
But worry not. "We’re not hiding anything," Adam Baran just told me. "We do what we say."
The Sword: Please, please tell me that you’re not really folding, which is what other gay magazines have done after announcing that they’re taking a break.
BUTT Magazine: Absolutely not true, we’re definitely staying around. We’ve always been a small magazine with a small staff. We’re not tied into a larger corporate structure like a lot of those magazines are, and we don’t really rely on advertisers like they do. It’s just different.
TS: What led to this decision?
BM: We’ve just reached a point where we’re thinking, okay, what’s next? What should we do to make the magazine better? And so for the next step we’re going to exapnd our blog into a fully functional website with a lot of content, and some special features and stuff like that. So it’s mainly just a productive hiatus. It’s certainly not our plan that it will replace the magazine, but rather it’s something new that we can do.
TS: What kind of interplay will there be with the new website and the magazine?
BM: The website has already given us a lot of lead-ins into the magazine, with ideas, for example, and the freedom to explore. I don’t think the relaunched website will drastically change the magazine, but I think we’ll be able to incorporate our community even further.
TS: Do I hear social networking?
BM: You know, I can’t speak to that exactly right now. But I love the BUTTheads feature that we have, and I think we’ll definitely have some sort of platform for people to connect with each other. The strength of BUTT has always been to highlight different communities across the globe that share similar mindsets, so I think it’d be really interesting to try to develop new ways of linking those communities up.
TS: Will you be expanding your staff?
BM: There are going to be some new staff people for the website, but we’re going to keep it tight and small, like we’ve always been.
TS: So you’re not going anywhere, right? Tell me that one more time.
BM: No, absolutely not. It’s just that we’ve hit this spot where the magazine is almost ten years old, so it seems like the perfect time to take a breather and decide what’s the next step forward. We’ll still be releasing a calendar for this year, and some other cool stuff that we’re working on in the meantime, so you’ll probably see a magazine as early as this coming winter.
TS: Have your readers started freaking out yet?
BM: Well I think it’s probably caught people off-guard a little, but it’s really just like, you know, we need a little break.
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