Folio Magazine, a magazine about the magazine industry, has as their cover story for May "Ziff's Last Stand." An in-depth look at how the once great magazine empire is falling apart like a leper. Sure, it's still functional, but it isn't looking too pretty anymore. It's no secret that the games division has been up for sale with no buyers. The article lays out in no uncertain terms that the relevance of game magazines is on the decline and uses Ziff Davis' issues as the poster-child of the future to come.
The prime example Folio uses is a scuffle between Edelman (a major PR firm) and an editor of PC Magazine. The battle concerned Senior VP at Edelman, Steve Rubell, publicly stating that he throws out his free subscription to the magazine. For any gaming media, when the PR guys stop reading your stuff, you can kiss access, interviews, information and general livelihood goodbye. And, in what really is the cherry on this story, the whole thing played out online.
According to the article, buyers of the ZD game division are actually interested in 1UP, the company's online portal and its 13 million monthly visitors. 1UP currently competes against Gamespot and IGN's 20 million monthly visitors. The path sounds pretty solid at this point. The magazines will continue to lose readers and relevance and, if the staff survives, will probably be transferred to online.