After the comical disaster that was the London Weekly, Londoners might be wary to learn that yet another free publication will be littering Tube carriages by the end of September. Called In-Debate, a title that makes it sound like a Liberal Democrat newsletter, the monthly mag nevertheless seems to be aiming at a slightly higher calibre of urbanite: it comes from the brain of Daniel Da Costa, who was previously involved with Intelligence Squared, the "forum for live debate" that we've mentioned before.
According to The Guardian, the mag will contain cultural listings, a concise take on what's happening in the news, and "a bias towards highbrow events including talks, debates and book readings". If this makes it sound like a cross between The Week and the London Review of Books, it's not surprising to learn that Intelligence Squared was co-founded by the editor of the former publication, Jeremy O'Grady.
With an initial print run of 10,000 at five central London stations (Moorgate, Bank, Liverpool Street, Embankment, and Westminster), the magazine is starting small, but the founders hope to reach 60,000 copies and 20 stations. Whether it will survive in a febrile free media market, where millions of copies of the Metro and Standard are handed out daily, and weeklies like Shortlist, Stylist, and Sport dominate, is another matter. But by going for a slightly more thoughtful demographic tired of endless prattle about which footballer is screwing whom, In-Debate might manage to tap into an audience little catered for by existing titles.