2001: Preferred - Sophisticated readers, welcome
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Golfweek Preferred, as much as anything, will be about assumptions. And they won’t necessarily be safe ones. We know you know a lot about the game. If you didn’t, you wouldn’t be reading this magazine.
It is safe for us to assume that when we write about “Hogan” you know we are referring to “Ben.” It is safe for us to assume that when we write about the “PGA of America,” you know we aren’t talking about “The Tour.” It is safe for us to assume you know the difference between someone who says they “play golf” and someone who says they “golf.”
In this initial Golfweek Preferred we assume you want to know more about Bandon Dunes than just where it is located. So we tell you how to play its two superb courses; we tell you where to eat at night; and we tell you what Bandon Dunes will look and feel like 10 years from now.
We tell you more about Peter de Savary than you likely knew before, and why, in certain circles, the architect of the dreams that became Skibo Castle and Cherokee Plantation is known as Peter “un Savary.”
Golfweek Preferred will be published once a month inside the pages of Golfweek, and it will offer regular compartments on, among other things, golf real estate, golf travel, golf apparel, golf equipment and game improvement, golf course design, golf media, golf books, golf courses, golf business and golf indulgences.
Once a week, the Wall Street Journal publishes a section called “Weekend Journal.” It has become wildly successful among its carefully targeted audience. Golfweek’s readers are even more carefully targeted and Golfweek Preferred will zero in even more carefully on the elements of the golf universe that exist outside the weekly world of scores, schedules and rankings.
We have made an assumption that our audience wants to be written to, eyeball-to-eyeball. We won’t write up or down to you. We will assume you are deep enough into the game to know that Carl Spackler was the name of the crazed character Bill Murray played in “Caddyshack,” and that the late Ely Callaway had his own wine label long before Greg Norman knew the difference between a pinot noir and a pinot gris.
What we won’t assume is that you will accept writing that isn’t forward-thinking, well-researched, clearly written, imaginatively expressed, street-smart and golf-hip. An aim of Golfweek Preferred will be to treat its readers the way graduate school professors treat their students. That is to say we won’t be afraid to assume a certain level of knowledge.
At the same time, we won’t tolerate golf snobbery, and we won’t allow stereotypes to go unchallenged. For instance:
Myth: All USGA people are boring. Fact: Not true.
Myth: All Tom Fazio designs are great tracks. Fact: Not true.
Myth: All caddies at Pebble Beach, Ballybunion and Augusta National intimately know the contours of the greens and the exact yardages. Fact: Not true.
We want to know what you discuss over dinner with your golf friends while on vacation. At the same time, over those same dinners, we want you to be talking about what you read in Golfweek Preferred.
We want you to smile and laugh when you read Golfweek Preferred. We also want you to nod and furrow your brow. If our writing provokes you, we even want you to curse at us on occasion. We are not here to be pablum or fast food or diet Sprite.
We have assumed the content of Golfweek Preferred can be nutritious and taste good at the same time. We welcome your informed feedback on this. At this very moment we are on the same page. Let’s keep it that way. Meanwhile, we offer this toast and mission statement:
May you remain our preferred reader. May we increasingly become your preferred reading.
– Brian Hewitt is Senior Editor of Golfweek Preferred.