If you talk to the people at Time Inc., the future hasn’t seemed this bright in over a decade. The massive publishing company, which owns Time, People and InStyle, among others, is now freed from the shackles of its big media owner Time Warner and finally able to control its destiny.
What that destiny is and how exactly it will get there remains bafflingly unclear. So is the amount of time the new team atop the company will have to realize that vision.
Time’s journey toward profitability in the digital era has broad implications, not just for its employees, but for the publishing industry. Its success or failure as a standalone company will reveal much about whether legacy media companies will survive as powerful conglomerates or splinter off into dozens of low-cost digital city-states.