Friday, December 1, 2006

Hey, Save Some Trees

Before getting started.... I will be adding new features to the blog as time passes. I have just added an rss feature as well as an email subscription. It's fun. It's convenient, and you won't miss a word.

OK. I have to say at the outset that I have long been a fan of magazines. I think they're great and I tend to buy more than I can usually read, and I sometimes even buy them at newsstand rates. But I think that magazines are in danger of becoming an endangered species unless they get over the fixation on paper. Fewer people are buying magazines and they're becoming a harder sell to advertisers. Time Magazine recently announced that it's cutting its rate base and circulation, and Jeff Jarvis' BuzzMachine has some very interesting things to say about the future of magazines.

Magazines have to start thinking of themselves as media brands. I believe that there will always be a place for paper, perhaps not in the same format that we find them now, but many of the brands out there have tremendous credibility and history. People will read the content -- in print or online -- or watch it or listen to it in other formats.

The recent evidence out there is that magazines are not making the most of the other distribution models out there. Even newspapers are doing it better if you look at the chart.
image

The Bivings Group (via BuzzMachine and paidContent.org) reports that magazines have a long way to go, and possibly not too much time, to save themselves from irrelevancy and/or bankruptcy. It's a report worth having a look at. There's money on the table. It's just not in paper.

2 comments:

Richard said...

Kudos on your new blog, Gordon. Hard to argue with you on the state of magazines today. For me, though, the big question is what will become of long form, in-depth investigative reporting, as it doesn't adapt well online. Goof luck!

Richard said...

Of course, I meant "good" luck!