Publisher/editor Michael Bate announced yesterday that he is closing Frank magazine and its online counterpart, efrank.ca. “Despite the efforts of our wonderful staff and contributors, our loyal investors and our dedicated subscribers, we could not achieve profitability,” Bate said in a release to subscribers.
The twice-monthly satirical rag, which took at Canada's political, business and media elite, was revived by Bate in 2005 after closing the year before.
"Frank is not part of the zeitgeist the way it was in the 1990s," Bate told the Toronto Star. "There was a time in the early '90s when we really had the field to ourselves, in the sense that we were doing stories that were the antidote to the mainstream media. In a way, we were the Internet. And then along came the Internet. More and more publications started doing what we were doing. And we couldn't compete."
Although the magazine has been sued more than 100 times during its 19-years of existence, according to the Canadian Press, the latest incarnation wasn't attracting the same kind of attention it once did.
"There's so much out there that is similar to what we're doing, we just weren't having enough impact," Bate told The Star.
Bate plans to write a book about his experience publishing Frank, but doesn't have a publisher yet.