People South Africa, 14 February 2014

People 1.7 14 February 2014

Is People South Africa being copied by their competitor Heat South Africa? That is the question a MediaSlut reader has asked me; “I’m buyer of both People magazine and Heat magazine and buy it weekly because I love them both but I’m getting very frustrated because heat magazine keeps having the same stories as people magazine a few weeks later.”

I explained that all ‘gossip’ magazines (or whatever you want to call them) receive their information from the same sources and platforms, so chances are that some stories will be the same/overlap.

But this Gossip-Mag-reader decided to send me a side-by-side comparison which shows the articles she’s referring to, their similarities, and also their dates (I’ve updated her images to include the actual issue dates, and the dates they went on-shelf).


“I got sick when I saw the latest heat on  zinio because I read the story about Bruce last week in people magazine”, she wrote, expressing her irritation with reading the same story twice, a week apart, with little or no extra information.

She also sent me more examples, which I think illustrates the point a bit better;


So now the question is; 

  • Are they all getting their ‘inspiration’ from International titles?
  • Are they all planning the same stories initially, but due to deadlines they are only published a week (in once case 2 weeks) later?
  • Or is there indeed an element of copying?

Whichever the case, I think this reader is the perfect example of someone who reads both magazines, but feel frustrated because they read the same stories over and over, just in a different publication, and in a new format. So I think it’s important for a title like heat South Africa to take note of this concern from one of their fans, and to address the issue… and look for a possible solution.

It does however look ‘suspicious’, especially if one might not be aware of deadlines and timelines that might be at play here… Looking forward to see what comes out of this…

Really hope they don’t have to change their tagline from “If it’s not in heat, it didn’t happen!”, to “If it wasn’t in People South Africa, it won’t be in heat”… 😉

People South Africa

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