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Between 2003 and 2005, “78 Magazine” made a big splash on San Diego’s North County College campuses, by tackling controversial issues and racy subject matter considered too extreme to be published by school funded newspapers. “78” was founded by recent college graduates disappointed by their experiences as college newspaper editors.

Now, after a one year hiatus, “78” has returned with a vengeance. The magazine has been completely revamped, exchanging the old newsprint tabloid format for a sleeker, more sophisticated design. The new magazine gives readers twice the content in a staple-bound glossy jacket featuring high quality paper and full color photography and illustrations. 78’s website has also been totally redesigned, showcasing our latest edition. A complete “78” web archive of art and articles from former issues is currently on the way. The website offers 100% free access to all and can be visited at www.78magazine.com

In the conservative North County area, “78” garnered criticism in its early days from those who disapproved of its edgy alternative approach to journalism. However it didn’t take long for the independent college magazine to develop a loyal fan base among its core demographic –the students of Cal State San Marcos, Palomar College, and Mira Costa College. “78” offered students along Highway 78 a publication they could actually relate to; making its mark on the North County college scene and adding a new alternative voice in their community.

“78” received publicity in college papers and major San Diego newspapers alike; including “The Telescope,” “The Pride,” “The San Diego Union Tribune,” “The North County Times,” and “The San Diego Business Journal.”

In 2005, “The Society of Professional Journalists” honored “78” with 10 awards including first place honors for “Opinion/Editorial” and “Critical Review.” “78” also received awards for “Original Illustration” and “Layout and Design –Publication as a Whole.” For a complete list of “78’s”awards see: http://www.sdspj.org/win2004.html

In 2006, with the dissolution of its parent company “Red Monkey Media Inc,” many of “78’s” founding members and staff went on to enjoy success pursuing other interests. Yet this did not mark the end of “78,” a number of founders and contributors have stayed on.

“78” has outgrown its North County college roots, expanding distribution throughout all of San Diego. While still a vehement advocate of free speech on college campuses, “78” is now appealing to a much wider demographic. The new “78” is an independent quarterly, with a primary target audience of readers ranging between the ages of 18 and 40. As before, 78 Magazine is a free publication. “78” is proud to provide a forum where new promising writers can find their voice and develop their talent.

“78” hit stands in mid February, covering a wide range of topics including, urban legends, Buddhism, Voodoo, video game addiction, the “MySpace” phenomena, and alternative literature and film reviews.

The current issue features exclusive in-depth interviews with documentary filmmaker, Tony Montana, Japanese horror icon, Junji Ito, Japanese puppeteer/filmmaker Hideyuki Kobayashi, and the Oingo Boingo tribute band, “Dead Man’s Party.”

In addition to local columnists, “78” is excited to announce the inclusion of an international section, showcasing stories and topics from around the globe. If this return issue is any indication, this new international element is expected to prove both informative and entertaining. The newest columnists reside in Tokyo, Morocco, Paris, as well as San Francisco, and New York.

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