From: Peggy Wilkins <firstname.lastname@example.org>, 21 May 2003
Subject: Media Life 5/20/2003: The not entirely all new PLAYBOY
Having seen a few of these sidebars, I have to say that I am quite ambivalent about them. I think some of them are good (which to me means it is both related to the story and adds real information) and some of them are less good. For an example, look at the Phil Spector story in the June issue. The sidebar titled "To know him is to fear him: Phil Spector through the years" adds real information that is directly relevant to the piece, while the one on the following page titled "Bad Vibrations" is for the most part unconnected to the story at hand. I suppose that may be the point of it—it's a different way of access to the story by way of being only remotely related—but to me it reads like a random unrelated thing and doesn't add much to the impact of the story.
If the real point is to get people to stop flipping through the pages long enough to notice there's a story there, it makes sense, but then it's also kind of silly. I'd really prefer to see more directly related stuff. But I know I am probably just missing the point... so I remain ambivalent about it.
From: Peggy Wilkins <email@example.com>, 16 Jul 2003
Subject: August issue comments, part 2
I am ambivalent about the sidebar/entry points. When they add relevant information, they are great, but all too often they seem to be a mess of barely related information; to me, this makes them detract from the features rather than enhancing them. For instance, in the Tobey Macguire interview, there is a sidebar on animals in movies, and the only relation to Macguire is that he is starring in Seabiscuit. That relation is so tenuous that it is more distracting then helpful. I don't see how this helps pull anyone into the interview, unless the point is only to make them stop flipping the pages.
From: Donna Tavoso <firstname.lastname@example.org>, 16 Jul 2003
Subject: The August Issue
I do agree that the sidebar was a weird choice of topics, I was expecting other great comic movies or even something about other stars who have dependency issues, since that was the most interesting part of the interview in my opinion.
From: Peggy Wilkins <email@example.com>, 21 Feb 2004
Subject: Road Map for a Revolution
Keep sidebars consistent with the feature they are part of. The Ray Bradbury piece in the February '04 issue was completely trivialized by the accompanying sidebar. Someone should have axed it.