American Society of Magazine Editors

ASME Announces Major Expansion of the National Magazine Awards to Encompass 12 New Digital Categories

October 14, 2009

David Willey, President of the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) and Editor-in-Chief, Runner’s World, Announced Significant Extension of National Magazine Award Categories With Addition of 12 Awards Honoring Digital Media.

NEW YORK, NY (October 14, 2009)—David Willey, President of the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) and Editor-in-Chief, Runner’s World, announced a significant extension of the National Magazine Award categories with the addition of 12 awards honoring digital media.  Mr. Willey’s announcement was made at the Magazine Innovation Summit, currently underway at the Grand Hyatt New York. 

The Digital Ellies, formally known as the National Magazine Awards for Digital Media, takes their name from the Alexander Calder stabile “Elephant” trophy.  It will be presented to National Magazine Awards winners and will be open exclusively to magazine websites and online magazines. The new awards represent the most extensive expansion of the National Magazine Awards in their 44-year history.

The Digital Ellies categories include General Excellence, Digital Media; Mobile Media; Design, Digital Media; Photography, Digital Media; News Reporting; Blogging; Regular Department or Section; Multimedia Feature or Package; Interactive Tool; Podcasting; Video; and Community.

With the addition of the Digital Ellies, the National Magazine Awards will now honor magazines in a total of 35 categories. The awards will be presented at two events. The Ellies evening gala will continue to honor magazines in traditional categories.  The 2010 gala is scheduled for the evening of April 22 at Alice Tully Hall in New York.  

The Digital Ellies will be presented during a special luncheon scheduled at the industry’s premier digital conference, Magazine Publishers of America’s (MPA) “Magazines 24/7.” Both the luncheon and the conference are slated for March 2010 in New York City.

“We’ve created these digital awards because the vast array of content created for digital platforms by magazine editors deserves greater recognition with its own dedicated awards stamped with the authority and prestige of the National Magazine Award brand,” said Mr. Willey.  “Since 1997, editors and publishers have celebrated excellence in magazine websites and online magazines, with both the MPA Digital Awards and Web categories in the National Magazine Awards. We’re taking it to the next level with these 12 new awards, which will enable ASME to shine a spotlight on the editorial and design talent in the digital space, and on the superb work that they’re doing.”

Willey also announced several other changes in the National Magazine Awards.  The Magazine Editors’ Hall of Fame Award, most recently presented at the joint MPA and ASME Magazine Lifetime Achievement Awards luncheon, will return to the Ellies evening gala, where it was first presented. For the first time in the history of the National Magazine Awards, judges will choose a Magazine of the Year, celebrating the excellence of magazines published on multiple platforms, including print and digital. The award will also be presented at the gala.
The official National Magazine Awards Call for Entries, containing details on all National Magazine Awards categories including the Digital Ellies, will be released on November 1.

About the National Magazine Awards
The National Magazine Awards honor magazines, published in print or online, that consistently demonstrate superior execution of editorial objectives, innovative editorial techniques, noteworthy journalistic enterprise and imaginative design. Established in 1966, the awards are sponsored by the American Society of Magazine Editors in association with the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. The awards are presented at two events, the Digital Ellies in late March and the Ellies in late April.