Boys' Life Magazine has a readership of a little more than 4 million. Although, the target audience of Boys' Life's older edition is aged between 12 and 17 years old, the editorial content maintains a level of integrity much higher than the magazines designed for young men only a few years older.
With Maxim targeting young men in their late teens and early twenties, it is astounding the difference only a couple years make in how these two magazines approach their audience members. The typical issue of Boys' Life opens with a letter from the editor that shares a story of a Boy Scout doing a good deed, or otherwise embodying the scout spirit. The editorial material is divided by very clear subjects such as History, Sports, Cars, Health, Space and Aviation, and many other departments that are shared with other men's lifestyle magazines. The key difference is the manner in which the information is presented. Nearly everything in Boys' Life has an educational or civil service spin to it. In the “Car” department, rather than reading about the newest, most expensive cars, readers will explore how a specific engine works or read a profile on big rig trucks.
In the health department you can expect to find articles discussing medical professionals' quest to wipe out deadly diseases, not how to get biceps as big around as your head. Boys' Life aims to educate young men and instill in them a strong sense of civil responsibility, while Maxim openly admits that it doesn't care if its readers worry about making the world a better place.
Is this difference in editorial approach indicative of how boys are expected to mature from their teenage years to their young adult years?