Harvard University’s ZIP code may become commonly known like a certain one in Beverly Hills after the debut of 02138, a lifestyle magazine aimed at Harvard alumni and the surrounding community.
Published by Atlantic Media Co., the title is the first launch publication that Atlantic Monthly owner David Bradley has invested in.
“We timed the release with events that tied Harvard alumni together,” said Meredith Kopit, publisher of 02138, New York. “We want to be in front of people coming back together and become a magazine that stands for re-engaging.”
The magazine was created by Harvard graduates Bom Kim and Daniel Loss. When at Harvard, the pair created Current Magazine, a news title for college students now published by Newsweek. Mr. Kim completed a degree in government, and Mr. Loss graduated from Harvard Law School.
“We have a higher ambition to probe and challenge the community and leverage their connection to one another,” Mr. Kim said. “We want people to see, think about and read our magazine and have it spark conversation on important issues.”
The bimonthly title debuts in early October with a controlled-circulation rate base of 50,000. The 120-page issue will feature a cover story on the Harvard 100, a ranking of the university’s most influential living graduates. Other features will include “Vanitas,” similar to a “Page Six,” and pages dedicated to breaking news, politics and entertainment.
Two issues will be produced this year, with six to follow in 2007.
“The ZIP code of Cambridge spills out through this magazine because it is formed around identity,” Ms. Kopit said. “We want the magazine to serve as a starting point where Harvard lives extend from.”
The publication describes its audience as rarified, yet not elitist, with sensitivity to the Harvard community.
“People who have been through common schools or institutions feel like members of a tribe,” Mr. Kim said. “They have this intense curiosity toward their peers and see reflections of themselves in one another.”
The complementing site at http://www.02138mag.com/ will run similarly to Craigslist.org, where viewers can gather in commercial or community-based settings. Additional editorial content also will be available.
Atlantic Media plans newsstand testing with several other college markets. The Ivy League schools will be the first.
Advertisers of 02138 include high-end outfits such as Brooks Brothers and several wealth management companies. The magazine cites The New Yorker and other larger city publications as its prime competition.
“The New Yorker has a certain sensibility, and we argue that we have a similar proposition,” Ms. Kopit said. “However, we are different in how we treat consumption and are more about cultivation than badge.”