JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A little over a month ago, Folio Weekly announced it was shutting down due to an “economic freefall.” A week ago, that changed when it announced it was making a comeback as Folio Weekly 2.0.
On Monday, News4Jax learned that it’s Attorney John Phillips who’s giving the magazine a second life. As first reported by News4Jax’s news partner the Jacksonville Daily Record, Phillips is hiring writers and staff, and he hopes to have a print issue out in July.
“We’re hiring, looking for people to give the rich diversity of Folio Weekly and bring it back such that people can tell stories and celebrate the positive in Jacksonville,” he told the Daily Record.
It reported that Sam Taylor, the magazine’s former publisher, will help with the reboot and that Phillips will serve at the interim publisher. Phillips said Boldland Press is a partner, which bought Folio, but he didn’t name any other partners.
Perhaps a clue of Phillips’ involvement with the magazine was an interview he had with the Jacksonville Jaguars’ Leonard Fournette regarding civil rights and the recent protests. Folio shared a link of the interview on social media:
Last night, we retained the services of @johnphillips to “give the oath” to Leonard @_fournette. They talked about civil rights, removal of the confederate monument & the @Jaguars. You can see videos on our YouTube channel- https://t.co/bIYbIMnev3. Come out to the protest today. pic.twitter.com/mzA61lYibM— Folio Weekly (@folioweekly) June 9, 2020
Phillips told the Record he hopes to create an archive of Folio stories that will be available online. He hopes to find more community sponsors to get funding for the magazine.
A statement released Monday night by Phillips reads in part:
“I learned of Sam Taylor’s retirement like most- reading a social media post. It led to the idea to see if Folio Weekly could be saved. My ear hurt from all of the calls and advice, solicited and unsolicited. The PDJ Publishing Company referenced by media has nothing to do with Folio Weekly. It’s for separate projects. Boldland Press, Inc., will be up on Sunbiz any day. It has been approved. I am a partner in Boldland Press. It owns Folio Weekly. I have not, and will not, comment on the ownership at this time. There are a lot of moving parts with an acquisition such as this and not quite all has been figured out at this point- a point your readers and viewers may confuse as deception. It’s not.
“As I said, the “whodunnit” of ownership isn’t the story. It’s the “why” that matters. Local and independent media works well with you all. Us all working to better this town, get more freedom from public records and more transparency is key. We want to work well with you all- telling stories and helping out. We are meeting with the “smartest in the room” while trying to figure out how to create something that lasts and uploading the vast archive on a shoestring budget.”