The American surf scene always had the Big 3. Surfer, Surfing and Transworld Surf Magazines were untouchable in the media game. Each mag had found their niche, developed a respectable following and operated as a profitable business. The feel of each brand was contrasted greatly and most folks were reverent fans of one but borderline despised the other two. But now, sadly, the menu has been reduced.
TransWorld Surf, which started in 1999, recently shut down. After 14 years of dutifully occupying the role of the USA’s most fun magazine, the party ended last week. And as sad as that may be, the staff at TWS embraced the end in the only they know how — goofy and fun. An open-casket funeral was held for the magazine, accompanied by a traditional paddle-out. The events were followed by a happy hour that cascaded late into the night.
So what now? Are we left with the Big 2? Will What Youth build their niche into a magazine that claims that third spot? Should you just start a magazine and see where it goes? Probably not. But instead of getting hung up on the what ifs, let us humbly salute a late and great magazine. May TransWorld Surf rest in peace.