Wiredless

The editor I've worked with on several infographics at Wired was laid off. His name: Paul Boutin. He's a blogger (we're all bloggers, wouldn't you like to be a blogger, too?).

Paul is terrific to work with as a freelancer. He assigns huge domains, like "all issues surrounding reallocation of spectrum for new purposes." Then he offers guidance, direction, feedback, shaping. He's supportive, but he won't take the, "Huh, I don't know" response. I've worked remarkably hard (and been quite well compensated) on the pieces I've done for him, and was rewarded by the outcome in print.

An officemate asked me when I mentioned that Paul was laid off, and I said that I thought the magazine had never been actually profitable: "How come?" I realized that despite Wired's continued relatively full slate of advertising even in the downturn, and its large subscription base, that they sunk a lot of money into Web ventures in the early days, and then were bought by Conde Nast, which may want to ultimately turn a buck on it by repaying their investment through profit.