Why I'm Not Renewing My Subscription to Entertainment Weekly

I've been reading Entertainment Weekly since it first came to newsstands when I was a teenager. I didn't have a job, but I dedicated a significant amount of my allowance for a subscription. Because it was awesome. The photos, the articles—I ate it all up. I have many issues of the magazine stockpiled in my collection, and many more were sacrificed to be cut up for my scrapbooks. And while there have been lapses in my subscriptions (lack of funds, too many moves), I've more or less been a consistent subscriber. But we received our renewal notice in the mail yesterday, and I'm thinking I won't be renewing.

Why now? After I've stuck it out through many EW changes in format and tone? The bottom line is that I find less and less in each issue that I actually want to read. The stuff they cover just doesn't interest me. I flip past article after article and can finish the magazine in roughly an hour, whereas it used to be that I curled up with it every Friday evening to read it cover-to-cover and still sometimes fell asleep before I could finish.

This might say more about me than about EW. Maybe I'm just old and EW is looking for that hot, hip young audience. (Sorry to break it to you, Eebz, but those kids don't read magazines; they're all online.) Maybe I've outgrown it, or maybe I'm just too much in the minority when it comes to my entertainment tastes. (For example, I don't watch reality television and couldn't give a rat's ass about Twilight.) Or it's just as likely that I can glean the things I want to know from the Internet. I can follow my favorite shows and musicians that way . . . Though I do miss all the nice pictures.

Meanwhile, I don't visit EW.com much, either. In part because they don't cover much of what I like, and in part because I dislike the format of the site itself, which I find busy and somewhat irritating. They also seemed to have struggled in finding quality writing in recent years, which is kind of a shame since there was a time when I used to think being a writer for EW would be just about the Best. Thing. Ever. But with so many media outlets now—a sea of them as opposed to the pool there used to be—the cream that rises to the top also sort of floats away in various directions.

A few months ago, my parents shipped me one of many boxes of my old stuff they'd had in storage, and there were many old issues of EW included. My husband and I took the time to flip through a few, and he said to me: "Remember when EW was good?" Yeah, I do, even if the memory is faded. And that's why I won't be renewing my subscription now.

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