The editor-in-chief of Rolling Stone, Noah Shachtman, is set to step down from his position at the end of the month, after more than two years at the helm of the renowned pop culture magazine. The decision comes after reported editorial differences with Rolling Stone’s chief executive, Gus Wenner, prompting Mr. Shachtman’s resignation. In a note to employees, Mr. Shachtman announced that his last day as the magazine’s top editor would be March 1, without providing specific details on the reasons for his departure.
Gus Wenner, in a separate note, informed staff that Sean Woods, the magazine’s deputy editor, and Lisa Tozzi, its digital director, will take over as interim co-editors while the publication begins the search for a new editor-in-chief. Mr. Shachtman will continue to contribute as a writer for Rolling Stone. During his tenure, the magazine under Shachtman’s leadership has ventured into hard-nosed investigative journalism, earning recognition with a National Magazine award for digital design and a nomination for an Emmy award in interactive media. The publication has also delved into expanding its reach beyond traditional print media, embracing events, licensing, online commerce, films, TV, and podcasts.
Additionally, Rolling Stone has been embroiled in controversy following comments made by Jann Wenner, one of the magazine’s founders and Gus Wenner’s father, in an interview with The New York Times last year. The remarks, widely deemed as racist and sexist, led to Jann Wenner’s ousting from the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation and condemnation from the Black Rock Coalition. Mr. Shachtman, during his tenure, had pushed the publication to cover the fallout from these controversial comments.
In the midst of Mr. Shachtman’s impending departure, opinions on the future direction of Rolling Stone are divided. Some view the editorial differences as a necessary part of the publication’s evolution, while others are concerned about the potential impact on the magazine’s investigative journalism and its broader coverage of pop culture.