Category Archives: 2013 Bonnier DG Media

The Penultimate Plunge

Dive No.: Week Five (Five dives)
Location: Pudding (For that’s where the proofs are)

Time in: 9 am
Time out: 5pm

Total Bottom Time: About 40 hours

Depth: Up to my eyeballs in it

Starting Air Pressure: Penultimate PSIs
Ending Air Pressure: Enough for the journey’s last leg (and my lungs)

Exposure Protection:
˙ Business Casual
˙ Thinking cap
˙ Self-confidence
˙ My contacts couldn’t touch the kind of visual aid I needed
˙ Paper-cut guards

Weight: The stack of folders couldn’t make me fold

Air: Hazy
On the surface: Eyes burning
Bottom line: Great degree of attention to detail required

˙ Fresh water (Fresh eyes would have been more welcome)
˙ Salt water (Optical outcry)
˙ Shore (Lots of making sure and re-re-re-checking)
˙ Boat (Getting ready to ship)
˙ Waves (We’ve reached the crest)

Visibility: Love is blind; I’m going blind for what I love.

For the most part this week proceeded as usual: a little posting here (including
another online original!), some fact-checking there, a dive-group-wide gathering
way over there (back in zone one which is really like zone zero, it’s so desolate)
because SEO guru Cami had some web tips to share. The continual Internet
instruction is invaluable in this digital age.

But something new, which although essential, must grow old for the editorial staff,
was passing around proofs. Sport Diver’s October issue had come of age, but before
she can meet her prints (pun intended) she must be paraded, multiple times, before
the critical eye of the staff so we can find and fix any imperfections. First, her plain
paper pieces were parceled out in folders. To say the odds were stacked against me
to finish my towering pile in a timely fashion would have neglected all of the even
pages. Oh, so many pages!

Anyway, armed with pen and pencil, we blotted out all of her blemishes. A copy
editor tries to catch all typos and grammatical errors. The editors put the final
touches on, including captions and tweaking headlines. The photo editor places
all photographer credits. The art director checks folios (page numbers) and then
readies all pages for “twisting,” which is when she uses software to direct Bonnier’s
in-house prepress department to create the Epsons.

An Epson printer, part of prepress

An Epson printer, part of prepress

Finally! October appeared all dressed up in her glossy Epsons, to take a final turn about the office, giving us one last chance to make alterations. I hated to pick on her, but I’m glad to have picked up on some final flaws. When errors are caught at this stage, the art director has to retwist the page.

Spelling error I caught; fof means fixed on file

Spelling error found; fof means fixed on file

Blurry-eyed but gratified to have helped produce a beauty, I was set on a project I
was sure to succeed at: an excel-like spreadsheet compiling all of the countries and
islands we had covered in Sport Diver from January to present. The two grape-sized
organs stuck in my eye sockets began to gripe and I felt like I was held captive by the
spreadsheet’s cells. But I did it! Listed them all from sea to shining sea, even though
at this point I no longer could. (The Sport Diver team will use as they plan content for
2014, so that they can avoid repetition.)

But having vision for the future is important, as was reflected in our meeting to
discuss the format for Sport Diver’s November/December feature and the fact that
I’m working on gathering information for the January/February issue. Several of
the print articles I wrote — for Sport Diver’s front-of-the-book section called “Dive
Briefs” — are slated for publication in the November/December issue. It’s weird to
be planning that far ahead, but 2014 will upstage 2013 before I realize what’s going
down. After all, 6 weeks is turning out to seem more like 60 seconds, but what I’ve
learned in this “minute” is much more than minutiae.


The View from Here

By Sarah Barchus

Dive No.: Week Four (Five dives)
Location: Zone Four

Time in: 9 am
Time out: 5 pm

Total Bottom Time: About 40 hours

Depth: Rebreather required during redesign

Starting Air Pressure: At the halfway mark
Ending Air Pressure: Not out of steam yet!

Exposure Protection:
˙ Business Casual
˙ Thinking cap
˙ Self-confidence
˙ Lifting brace (braced for moving)

Weight: Pockets heavy with change

Air: Warmer in zone four!
On the surface: Warmer due to increased walking for meetings
Bottom line: I’m warming up to it

˙ Fresh water (Closer to the cooler)
˙ Salt water (The taste of change)
˙ Shore (Set foot on new grounds)
˙ Boat (Moving the mooring)
˙ Waves (Riding it out)

Visibility: New view from here

This week the dive group weighed anchor, moving from the Zone One cubicles to
the Zone Four clusters. This is part of the restructuring and remodeling process
occurring within Bonnier Corporation.

We are now quite a distance away from our senior editor Patricia Wuest; we
almost need a map in order to find her office again to attend meetings. While I do
exaggerate, a bit, we really did bring a map to one of the meetings this week.

Screen Shot 2013-08-12 at 6.30.46 PM

This map is the layout for the magazine that we will eventually send to the printer.
Right now it is in what I will call the “cartographer’s critique” because we are
marking it up for changes. The “map” is a sheet of paper with rows of boxes
numbered by page: Single boxes represent the covers, and pairs of connected boxes
signify page spreads. Smaller squares overlaying the boxes represent ad placement.
It kind of looks like a game board, and in a way the mapping process is a game, like
a puzzle. We have to figure out where to fit articles amid the ads. Not only do they
have to fit physically, but also conceptually.

Speaking of concept, we selected several mock-ups for the upcoming issue’s cover
this week; it was neat to see the options and give my opinion on the picture that will
persuade people to pick up the magazine.

Patricia brought out a copy of Scuba Diving’s first issue on Friday.

Screen Shot 2013-08-13 at 7.37.25 PM

That cover, with a woman photo-shopped to improver her (a-hem) “assets” and her position in relation the dolphins…well, let’s just say our covers have greatly improved since June 1992. Scuba Diving’s art director, Monica Alberta, needed the issue for a
timeline she’s creating for the Dive Group’s end-of-year Special Issue Publication

Scuba Diving’s photo editor Elly Wray — Elly is a professional underwater
photographer who does awesome work — will photograph the gear article in this
first issue, to show ScubaLab’s first gear test on the timeline. ScubaLab is the testing
facility for the magazine and conducts all-important testing on dive gear.

The dive group continues to work on our idea for for the SIP – a much larger puzzle
than mapping since we won’t have all of the pieces in (we’re waiting to find out
what new gear will be featured) for a while yet. The team is putting together the
ScubaLab part of the SIP — in addition to creating the timeline, the SIP will have tips
on purchasing and maintaining dive gear.

The waiting game continues as restructuring and construction remains in the
beginning stages for the Bonnier Dive Group. Add that to the shifting circumstances
in the magazine industry and it seems like the list of things that are changing is

Another endless list is the one of the “to-do” variety. On mine this week were a
couple of dive briefs and another online article as well as the all-essential fact checking. New to me was something called “Listings.” Simple, yet important, the Listings page in Sport Diver mentions our partners around the world featured in that particular issue, and help maintain our symbiotic relationships. As professional
relationships are crucial for career success, I am happy to continue building mine
with Bonnier Corporation in the last two weeks of my internship.



Technical Training

By Sarah Barchus

Dive No.: Week Three (Four dives)
Location: Caught up in the Internet

Time in: 8 am
Time out: 5 pm

Total Bottom Time: about 32 hours

Depth: Technically deep

Starting Air Pressure: Filled with ocean breeze
Ending Air Pressure: Spare air

Exposure Protection:
˙ Business Casual
˙ Thinking cap
˙ Self-confidence
˙ Exposed to the electronic elements

Weight: Enlightened

Air: Some heat around due to the digital “debate”
On the surface: I think it’s pretty cool
Bottom line: It’s a hot topic

˙ Fresh water (Found new clarity)
˙ Salt water (Small tear shed for print)
˙ Water cooler (Emptier as people traveled)
˙ Shore (Visited it, but that doesn’t mean I’m just coasting along))
˙ Boat (Getting on board with the digital platform)
˙ Waves (Preparing to surf the web’s)

Visibility: Regardless of screen size, digital is the big picture

The changing tides I witnessed at the ocean’s shore last weekend when Patricia and her husband Tom were kind enough to cart me to the coast were echoed back at work this week.

Print has a place and it’s something I love to hold on to (and by its nature, I actually can), but its prospects are drying up. While this leaves some people salty, in order to stay afloat in the business one needs to venture into the digital deep. This week I submerged myself in some technical diving.

Patricia showed me how she keeps track of Sport Diver’s online success using Omniture. The numbers show the importance of sidling up to social networks. Note to self: make social media my friend and business colleague.

Speaking of colleagues, I had two new my divemasters this week: digital editor Cami Webb and Scuba Diving intern Ashley Annin.

Cami knows the ins and outs of the SEO system. She explained how to snag a search engine’s attention to ensure your content generates clicks. After chatting with her, things started to click with me. To be “see-worthy” word choice must not only be stylized, but also strategic.

I practiced these new tips when posting content to Sport Diver’s website this week, including an article with my byline! (It certainly was satisfying typing my name in the author’s box, knowing that now my name will show up in the drop-down menu in the future. Promising? I hope so.) I worked on choosing keywords that were more likely to hook a search engine’s attention by utilizing Google AdWord’s Keyword Tool, which Ashley introduced me to.
Here’s a link to the article:

And a peek at what it looks like:
Screen Shot 2013-08-11 at 11.57.06 AM

Ashley gave me some great advice this week. She reiterated SEO’s importance and directed me toward “Click,” a book that gives tips for generating online readership. Ashley promoted self-education, encouraging me to research the industry outside of my classes.

Both Cami and Ashley shared how helpful LinkedIn has been for them. I previously thought of it as a networking site for professionals, which it is, but in my mind I didn’t fit that description. However, in the journalism field to become a professional you need to be one. Click.

That’s why I’ve chosen to use part of my day off to do some digital diving on my own. Usually it’s unwise to dive alone, but I have little fear because I know that the world converges online, so I will hardly be lacking for company.


Function Follows Form

By Sarah Barchus

Dive No.: Week Two (Five dives)
Location:  Various sites in the office

Time in: 8 am
Time out: 5 pm

Total Bottom Time: About 40 hours

Depth: Going a little deeper

Starting Air Pressure: Full tank after the weekend
Ending Air Pressure: Ready for a refill

Exposure Protection:
˙ Business Casual
˙ Thinking cap
˙ Self-confidence
˙ In need of an umbrella

Weight: Heavier as the week progressed

Air: Florida’s patented warmth
On the surface: Feeling a bit of heat
Bottom line: Feverish desire to contribute

˙ Fresh water (Florida rain, which consistently started at quitting time)
˙ Salt water (Sweating the details)
˙ Water cooler (Emptier as people traveled)
˙ Shore (At times felt beached, waiting on some detail in order to proceed)
˙ Boat (All hands needed on deck!)
˙ Waves (The work came in them)

Visibility: Couldn’t see the format for the font; turning tides mean the only place to look is forward

I walked off a leisurely weekend ready to get back on the work track. Little did I
know that a jolting game of red light green light was awaiting me. There was plenty
to do this week, with editors intermittently traveling and returning: articles needed
fact-checking, dive briefs needed writing, copy needed cutting, meetings needed to
be met, and to “Getaways” I needed to get getting.

While much of last week’s profile was echoed this week, I learned a few new things,
like how Sport Diver writes an assignment letter, and how the team decides what
stories to feature in upcoming issues. One project in particular encompassed the
underlying tone of the week for me: Getaways. Why? Because the devil’s in the

Let me explain. The Getaway grid, a project I was assigned this week, is essentially
an organized visual, comparing dive operations from the same location. It tells the
reader the shops’ instructional capabilities, accommodations, special services and
other pertinent, at-a-glance information. However, for me, this seemingly simple
project required long looks, which, after all week of picking at the project, gave me a
long face.

Fonts. In order to work on the Getaway grid I needed to use Adobe InCopy, the
current word-processing software — integrated with Adobe InDesign — that is
predominantly used by magazine and newspaper editors. In order to input the
information into the predesigned grid, I needed to follow the grid’s format, which
included inputting the information utilizing the correct fonts. My computer wasn’t
loaded with them. In this case, function followed form, so until I had those fonts, I
was stuck. The first red light.

Form. Even after I got the fonts, the program refused to cooperate. When I would
attempt to change the view of the grid, I saw that little revolving rainbow. When it
comes to technology, I certainly do not have the Midas touch, and let me tell you—a
pot of gold was not waiting for me at the end of that rainbow. InCopy crashed. Turns
out, the Getaway template I was using was corrupt, so Sport Diver’s art director,
Elizabeth, had to restore a different template. The second red light.

Feedback. Fact is, facts are crucial. You can’t let the details escape you in Getaways.
That meant if I was uncertain about one of the shops’ services, I needed to verify
with them. Which meant playing communication tag. Although a fun game for spry
youngsters, it felt much to me like just running in circles. Waiting for the emails to
come back became the third red light.

Here’s the final product, which will be published in Sport Diver’s October issue:
Screen Shot 2013-08-11 at 11.34.52 AM
My experience with Getaway grids was a small-scale version of some of the overarching themes I saw this week.

Function follows form. Structure is important to the success of a magazine. Each individual in the Bonnier Dive Group has an important contributing role to the finished project. When roles shift and the equilibrium is disturbed, it’s much harder to get with the program.

Feedback. Communication is crucial. There is much meat to meetings. Inter-departmental dialogue and coordination with colleagues is the key to changing those red lights to green.


Diving In

By Sarah Barchus

As a scuba diver sharing my experience as a media intern for the Bonnier Dive Group, I thought it appropriate to detail my days in a format divers can relate to: the dive log. So, from here on out let me be (dive) brief.

Dive No.: Week One (Five dives)
Location: Sport Diver and Scuba Diving magazines, Bonnier offices in Winter Park, FL

Time In: 8 am
Time Out: 5 pm

Bottom time: About 40 hours

Depth: Not too far over my head

Starting Air Pressure: High: Excited breathing
Ending Air Pressure: Ambient: Breathing it all in

Exposure Protection:
˙ Business Casual
˙ Thinking cap
˙ Self-confidence

Weight: Healthy workload kept me busy

Air: Beautiful Florida
On the surface: I’m cool, calm, and collected
Bottom line: I received a warm welcome

˙ Fresh water (Florida rain)
˙ Salt water (Florida’s a bit warmer than Wisconsin)
˙ Water cooler (All the good gossip— just kidding!)
˙ Shore (Stayed on land)
˙ Boat (I’m on board with the internship)
˙ Waves (Haven’t created any yet!)

Visibility: Sneak peek at the world of magazine publishing, accessed through the
backdoor of Sport Diver and Scuba Diving magazines

After exploring the site the weekend before starting my internship (Winter Park,
Florida, has a charming historical district teeming with tasty stops, trendy shops,
and several green spaces to park oneself), I was eager to dive in. And so with a
deep breath (full disclosure—I may have broken the No. 1 rule of diving and held
my breath), I made my giant-stride entrance through Bonnier Corporation’s doors.
Although they were made of glass, what lay ahead of me was a little unclear. What
would my profile be? Silent shadow? Coffee collector?

But from the start, the table was turned on those stereotypical intern images. Just
like the BBQ I enjoyed with the some of the Dive Group members at senior editor
Patricia Wuest’s house the evening before, I discovered that my time would be
stuffed with experiences I would savor.

This week I sampled some of the steps of the magazine process. Navigating some
cubicle coral, I was corralled into a few meetings — the Monday debriefing, a special
issue spread planning, and a digital discussion regarding how to improve Sport
’s online presence — and I fact-checked and edited some articles, posted
content to the website and Facebook, observed set-up for a photo shoot, and even
wrote a short front-of-the-book piece for Sport Diver. Talking shop, I’d have to give
my experience a PADI (Perfect Adventure of a Dive Internship) five-star rating so
far. With the help of experienced guides like Patricia and managing editor Rebecca
Strauss, creative minds like art director Elizabeth Fleener, and the ever-essential
technical crew, I am confident, and I can’t wait to continue my excursion.

Here’s one of my Facebook posts for Sport Diver:
Screen Shot 2013-08-10 at 5.44.53 PM