The Atlantic Reaches Record Audience of 42.3 Million in May 2017

Month marked by homepage redesign, global launch, and blockbuster June magazine issue “My Family’s Slave”

Washington, D.C. (June 1, 2017)—The Atlantic reached new audience highs in May, drawing 42.3 million monthly unique visitors to (Omniture), and setting new records for daily unique visitors, page views, and concurrent visits. This achievement comes in a month when rolled out a redesigned homepage to reflect the rapid pace of news today and The Atlantic’s growing editorial ambitions of the past few years, marked by a dramatic increase in the number of reporters on staff.

“During my time at The Atlantic, audience to our flagship site has grown from 2 million monthly uniques to more than 40 million,” said The Atlantic’s President Bob Cohn. “That’s exhilarating. What was especially noteworthy in May is that, in the midst of a punishing news cycle that fueled our journalists to do powerful and impressive coverage of the Washington story, the Atlantic piece that captivated the Internet doesn’t contain the words Trump, Russia, or covfefe.”

That article was the magazine’s much-discussed June cover story, “My Family’s Slave” by the late journalist Alex Tizon, published May 16, which defied a news cycle absorbed by political news to quickly become The Atlantic’s second most-read story of all time. The piece helped lead to two consecutive record days of audience on May 16 and May 17, netting 4.4 million and 4.8 million uniques respectively. News reports, reactions, commentaries, critiques, and broadcast segments about the cover and the questions it raises spanned the world. The Atlantic also published a series of reports on contemporary slavery and reader response to the cover.

“What I admire most in our writers is their unusual ability to cut through noise and nonsense and cut through with real speed,” said Jeffrey Goldberg, editor in chief. “We see that when we apply extreme intelligence, analytical rigor, and careful, fact-driven writing to the great controversies of the day, we fulfill our collective purpose.”

The breadth of The Atlantic’s journalism was on full display last month. In a harrowing report, Vann Newkirk unravels a decades-long lead-poisoning lawsuit in New Orleans that exposes how the toxin destroys black families. Politics reporting placed The Atlantic at the center of the conversation, from Julia Ioffe on the future of the FBI’s Russia investigation after the ouster of James Comey, to David Graham’s assessment of a Trump presidency potentially beyond repair, to Molly Ball with an insider’s-look at how Trump is torturing Capitol Hill, and David Frum’s review of Trump’s first international trip as a catastrophe for U.S.-Europe relations. Also in the June issue of the magazine, Barbara Bradley Hagerty’s “When Your Child is a Psychopath” is still leading the site with one of the highest engaged times of any article in The Atlantic’s history.

May also saw the launch of You Are Here, an original series for YouTube which draws upon the expertise of The Atlantic’s science writers to help us understand humans and everything we touch. The series marks the start of a new partnership between The Atlantic and YouTube, and represents a shift to a YouTube-first editorial strategy for Atlantic Video.