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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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Session:         Page of 1029

Q:

And that's where the competition came with you?

Cerf:

Random House is a big juvenile publisher too. We were in direct competition with a company which we partially owned, which is sort of ridiculous.

Q:

The other thing...we mentioned Curtis Publishing Company and how they were having trouble with their magazines. I'd love to pick your brains a little bit. Why do you think that the magazines have deteriorated and the people are not buying them so much? Some of it may be the paperbacks.

Cerf:

Well, a little is the paperbacks. The main thing that has hurt them however is television. Many people who would buy a magazine just to pass an evening--a travelling salesman, alone in a city, for example--would buy two or three magazines to bring to his room when he was stuck in a town and didn't know anybody. Today, in every hotel and motel room is a television set. If not, there's one down in the lobby. The people who read just out of desperation can now just turn a knob and see all of this‘trash on television. Why should they have to read it? They don't have to think at all when they watch it on television. When you study the groups around a television set in a small town, it's pretty discouraging. There they sit, glued to a television set. They don't even know what they're watching. They sit there in a semi-stupor the whole evening. That has hurt the magazines--picture ones particularly.



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