Mayim Bialik’s Newsweek.com site (full disclosure: I edit the site) was actually the “before” of this morning’s news. The overhaul, however, is a huge departure from the site’s former iteration, and perhaps a stroke of genius. “We don’t ever want to repeat the old Newsweek.com,” executive editor Jason Lemkin said. “We really want to be iconic—brilliantly written, smart and sophisticated. That’s what we’ve been trying to achieve with this story.”
[Update, 4:30 p.m.: How’s the design coming along? Lemkin says with great difficulty. One goal for the redesign was to make reading easier, but that was a complicated goal, he said, for such a large site. “We’re working on the nitty-gritty,” he says. “There’s a lot of nitty-gritty that’s still lacking. We still have so much work to do.”]
She won’t appear on-screen for a while, either. “She doesn’t come in at all,” Lemkin said. “Our back end has been designed with her in mind from the start.”
Aside from the design, Lemkin praised Bialik’s reporting. “Mayim’s cover story was so gripping, but we also think she’s one of the best writers out there,” he said. “We’re thrilled to have her.”
Do I agree? Maybe. But I do wonder, what do you think? Personally, I love this site. But I’m also a big fan of Gawker and, well, despite Newsweek’s problems, it’s still the online safe place for frivolous scandals. How much room can Newsweek carve out for frivolity?
Previously: Mayim Bialik’s Newsweek.com debut: A business meeting and Michelle Obama
Updated: Video with Mayim Bialik from Alanna Hubbard’s “Out”: “While I am not a feminist or intersectional feminist, I am not a rule-following or socially awkward feminist.”