It's surprising to me (in a good way) that Consumer Reports still has the clout they do. I was raised by very practical, discriminating parents who were longtime subscribers, and who loved its sensible incorruptible editorial outlook. For those who have followed its history, there was a stretch of time--perhaps most of the 1990s--when the magazine's design looked increasingly dated, and its view of the world felt out of touch. Failing to keep up wasn't unusual, of course: dozens of publications were blind-sided by the new media requirements pushed with tidal force by the Internet.
But then CR surprised a lot of people--including me--by running one of the first successful subscription sites on the Internet. This is a distinction they still enjoy today.
A magazine keeping its head above water is commendable and a little surprising these days (see: Newsweek). What is even more surprising is that CR, the wake of its "Not Recommended" rating of the iPhone 4, seems to be the one force capable of making Apple hold a press conference to apologize (almost), explain its actions (almost), and take some steps towards resolution.
That is no small feat.