Gay media leader The Advocate will be trimmed down from a standalone magazine to an insert, insiders report.

The Advocate quickly evolved from a newsletter titled The Los Angeles Advocate in 1967 to the nation's only publication dedicated to gay news and politics by the mid-70s. It remains the only gay glossy available on newsstands nationwide.

Its former owner, PlanetOut, shored up the magazine with related businesses, including industry-leading LGBT websites and and other gay-oriented publications such as gay-glam monthly Out.

But one decision, which followed a receding publishing market, continues to haunt the gay media empire.

In 2006, PlanetOut made the devastating decision to purchase gay cruise line RSVP. Less than a year later, the company chalked up its loses and sold RSVP to Atlantis Events, Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

Yet, the company could not regain its footing. By 2009, after selling several more properties, PlanetOut agreed to be bundled into Here Media, Inc. and relinquish control of the company as it faced possible NASDAQ delisting.

The move gave CEO Paul Colichman a gay media empire for a song. Colichman controls all-gay cabler here! and the gay-friendly movie studio Regent Releasing, as well.

But turning around a gay icon amid a recession that has hit publishers harder than most businesses has turned out to be easier said than done. Last week, gay blog reported the magazine faced another round of staff cuts, which included managing editor John Jameson, a 15-year veteran.

And The Advocate will be trimmed down from a standalone magazine to a 32-page insert bundled inside Out.