Washington Journalism Review decides to become 'American'

January 06, 1993|By Timothy J. Mullaney | Timothy J. Mullaney,Staff Writer

Washington Journalism Review, the College Park-base journalism magazine that serves as a watchdog over the nation's press, is changing its name to American Journalism Review, effective with the March issue.

Reese Cleghorn, president of WJR and dean of the University of Maryland College of Journalism, said the move was made because only 18 percent of the magazine's 25,000 subscribers live in Washington, Virginia or Maryland.

"We've been discussing it for about a year," Mr. Cleghorn said. He said even attentive readers have assumed that up to 60 percent of the magazine's readership was concentrated in and around Washington. "Occasionally, we run into advertisers who think that, too," he said.

In 1987, the magazine was given to the university, which controls the publication through the University of Maryland Foundation to separate the magazine's finances from the state-funded university. Since then, the magazine's focus on the industry has sharpened, with frequent profiles giving way to tougher, more analytical coverage of industry issues.

"I think it has hardened," said Mr. Cleghorn, who added that no editorial changes were planned specifically to accompany the new name. "Anyone who looks at it has seen a steady evolution. It's been a tough-minded review of professional practice."

The review's primary competition is the Columbia Journalism Review, which has a circulation of 31,000 and is published at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism in New York.

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