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Indie labels feeling demise of music press

Harp, which folded last month, joined No Depression and Resonance in the graveyard of departed magazines aimed at the “mature” indie audience. The reverberations of these cancellations are being felt throughout the indie music industry. Labels such as New West, Yep Roc and ATO Records find themselves without a valuable place to buy ad space and submit albums for review. Josh Wittman, marketing director for Yep Roc, says the departed magazines were “core publications” and that Yep Roc’s print ads will now have to be concentrated in Filter.

 

Other labels are searching for new outlets. John Biondolillo, general manager of ATO says that his label has switched away from print ads, choosing instead to focus on online and television advertising. New West president Cameron Stang echoes this sentiment, saying that "the Internet has become much more important for us. We now have staff members dedicated to growing our online presence, and the social networking sites and blogs are a big part of our outreach strategy.”

 

Though the switch to online and television marketing is definitely a response to the changing way that consumers obtain music, Wittman observes that the demise of these magazines could have unforeseen consequences: "It's hard to see publications for the non-teen and twenty-something demographic go because they are the group that still buys physical CDs and keeps the record stores open," Wittman says. "They are not the people that are reading Stereogum all the time." [Reuters]

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