An image of various magazine covers, including People, Glamour and ESPN.

Magazines can be organized into two groups: consumer and trade. Consumer magazines typically focus on niche markets related to hobbies and leisure activities (Tennis, Vegetarian Times), or offer a variety of news, information and entertainment (The New Yorker, Esquire). Major news magazines like Time and US News & World Report are influential consumer magazines that have large circulations and employ large staffs. Niche consumer magazines usually have small staffs and rely on freelance writers for much of their content. Trade or professional magazines report on certain industries or professions.

Writers and editors produce a wide variety of written materials in an increasing number of ways. They develop content using multimedia formats that can be read, listened to or viewed onscreen. Most writers and editors use desktop or electronic publishing software, scanners and other electronic communications equipment.  In addition, because many writers today create material directly for the Internet, such as online newspapers and text for video games, they need to know about graphic design, page layout and multimedia software. They should also be familiar with web interactive technologies.

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