Magazines vs. The Internet

Unless you've been living in a cave, you've probably heard that newspaper and magazine sales (and therefore, print ad revenues) are down. To combat that decline, several big magazine publishers have come together on a multimillion-dollar ad campaign to diss the Internet:

The ads press the case that magazines remain an effective advertising medium in the age of the Internet because of the depth and lasting quality of print, compared with the ephemeral nature of much of the Web's content.

"The Internet is fleeting. Magazines are immersive," says one ad, which is slated to appear in May issues of the participating publications. The first spread features a photo of swimmer Michael Phelps from ESPN The Magazine, with the headline "We surf the Internet. We swim in magazines." [...]

"A lot of us sat back for way too long and listened to all this abuse and said nothing about it," says Jann Wenner, who orchestrated the campaign. "Meanwhile, we sit on top of one of the greatest mediums," adds Mr. Wenner, whose Wenner Media publishes Rolling Stone and US Weekly.

That's a big mistake because the Interwebs don't take that sort of thing lying down. Asylum has just penned an open letter to the magazine from the Internet:

However, when you start talking trash about the Internet, you're throwing down the gauntlet. [...] Everything you can do, we can do better and faster. Plus, we can broadcast it everywhere instantly, while you're still trying to convince us magazines are as cool as Michael Phelps circa summer '08.

I love reading magazines, and of course, I love the Interwebs - so when these two favorites start fightin', I feel a bit conflicted. That and I'm looking forward to more LOLcats!

Check out the full open letter over at Asylum: Link


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I stopped taking paper magazines and newspapers when I realised that they made for so much of my paper-waste while at the same time I could read most of the info just as easy on the internet- often wit the added benefit that you can react and see reactions from other readers right then and there if you feel the need to do so.

I now await the developments in the e-reading tech and those other comparable technologies. I see a bright future for magazines and newspapers in that field.
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I think this is just nit picking and a petty "mine is better than yours" plea. Having said that I wouldn't mind if there were less ads on the internet. I think whats screwing up the internet is everywhere you look is full of ads. I would definitely support fewer ads on the net so it doesn't look like spam central.

Until then I have my popup blocker though.
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I hear the statistic a lot, but I must admit, I'm curious to know where it comes from precisely.

In my experience (I don't work in marketing, but do work with science magazines) magazine sales aren't doing as badly as people presume. Shares in the overall market have divided, from what I've been told, but this is far from 'print is dead'.

What successful magazines are realising is that the web is a tool that augments what they do, not competes with it.

Every new medium that has come into being has been heralded as the 'death' of something. The grammophome heralded the death of local choirs; cinema the death of live theatre; television the death of cinema etc. And while they all evolved from the impact of competing tech, none of it disappeared.

Print will be around for a while yet, even if will necessarily involve a digital component.
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