>> In the past couple of months, Anna Wintour has endured more than the lion's share of Vogueageddon-type rumors. Today, however, Cityfile points out that there's some rhyme and reason to it all — everything is part of an ongoing behind-the-scenes battle between Anna and Si Newhouse, who are in the midst of Wintour's contract negotiations.
The Page Six piece in November that Anna was considering retirement? According to Cityfile, "one of Wintour's first attempts to send a 'take-it-or-leave-it' message to her corporate taskmasters." The Gawker rumor from "Conde Nast insiders" who said that Carine Roitfeld was being considered to take Anna's place? A "high-level source" told Cityfile that the story "emerged as the two sides pressed on with very difficult contract negotiations [and] was intended to convey to Anna and the world that Wintour wasn't indispensable and that the company had other options if an agreement couldn't be reached." Those seemingly-farfetched Anna-as-ambassadress rumors? Anna sending a message to Newhouse that "there were still a few jobs out there even more impressive than the title of editor-in-chief of Vogue."
There's been no public retaliation in the past couple of weeks or so, and no word on if any headway has been made, but when everything is boiled down, Cityfile concludes:
Both sides have limited options, which probably explains the ferocity of the whisper campaign. Wintour cannot be easily replaced. And there are few graceful ways for Wintour to extricate herself from the situation. The idea that she's really going to become an ambassador is a far-fetched one, at least for anyone outside Vogue's offices. But it was a clever and very timely rumor, and it bought her time.