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Print magazines going purely online

Posted by Michael Bloch in online world (Saturday November 22, 2008 )

In the mid-90’s I used to salivate over the prospect of the next issue of my favourite tech magazines coming out with their bonus cd’s of software goodies, but I haven’t bought a magazine of any description now for at least 5 years; preferring to get my industry news online – it’s fresher and cheaper.

It’s a little kinder to the environment too.

Back in October, the Christian Science Monitor announced it would be the first nationally circulated newspaper to replace its daily print edition with an online version commencing in 2009. The CS monitor had been a print magazine for over a hundred years, but circulation has trended downward for nearly 40 years.

More recently, Ziff Davis Media stated it was ending print publication of PC Magazine. PC Magazine had been around in print format for an incredible 27 years. However, PCMag Digital Network welcomes over seven million unique visitors each month – that’s 10 times the circulation of the print magazine.

I guess there will always be a place for print magazines, until such time that digital readers become truly portable and more economical – it’s a bit difficult reading your favorite mag on public transport with a notebook.

However, CS Monitor and PC Magazine are the first trickle of what will become a flood of other major titles doing the same; particularly those geared towards tech. It just makes sense. In many ways, the digital format is more convenient and certainly far cheaper for readers and for the companies, it’s a good way to cut costs… and cram in more advertising – kaching.

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