Well, This Will Be Interesting ...

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.

Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/24/10 08:03 PM

In the new issue of MAGIC magazine, the editor announces that the magazine will go digital in September. No other details aside from the fact that the digital and paper editions will co-exist.

Your thoughts?
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20766
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Donal Chayce » 06/24/10 08:08 PM

Call me old-fashioned, but I like holding a real magazine (or book) in my hands. So I'm indifferent about a digital version as long as Stan continues to print the hard copy version.

Magic has had a complimentary online component for several years now, but I've rarely (less than a handful of times) made use of it.
The MacGician®
User avatar
Donal Chayce
 
Posts: 306
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Los Angeles

Postby Magic Newswire » 06/24/10 08:09 PM

Well... I love the Wired App for my iPhone and iPad. If I could get the same from Genii and from Magic with similar features it would be a ... sorry for the World Cup reference... Gooooooaaaaaallllll!!!!
User avatar
Magic Newswire
 
Posts: 2474
Joined: 03/29/08 12:32 PM

Postby jason156 » 06/24/10 08:56 PM

The deciding factor for me will be the cost
jason156
 
Posts: 143
Joined: 08/06/08 05:38 PM
Location: Daytona Beach

Postby the Larry » 06/24/10 09:45 PM

It is going to secure the prosperity of Magic Magazine. Genii will have to follow suit or it will further fall behind.
the Larry
 
Posts: 200
Joined: 12/28/08 08:43 AM

Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/24/10 09:47 PM

Prosperity? You're joking, right?
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20766
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Dustin Stinett » 06/24/10 10:11 PM

If MAGIC ends up going "all digital all the time" I will no longer subscribe at any price.

"I weep for the future."
--Chez Quis Maitre D' ("Ferris Bueller's Day Off")
User avatar
Dustin Stinett
 
Posts: 5901
Joined: 07/22/01 12:00 PM
Location: Southern California

Postby magicrobharv » 06/24/10 10:16 PM

I currently subscribe to Genii, Magic Magazine, and Reel Magic Magazine (DVD). Kozmo from Reel Magic Magazine (RMM) has mentioned on his DVDs that he is upset people are posting RMM on internet sites and people are downloading it for free. I dont see how Stan Allen can possibly think the same thing wont happen to his magazine. Richard has stated that he would never put out a digital Genii. I think that this is not only a good business decision, but if past history is to be used as a barometer of future events, it is the only way to keep Genii (or any magic magazine) out of the hands of those not willing to pay for it. I really think the risks, (I.E. people downloading free issues on the internet), greatly out weigh any rewards.

In addition, I enjoy reading a magazine I can hold. I have bought several books on PDF, and I find that I still have to eventually go down to Office Max and have them printed up to fully enjoy them.

Well have to wait and see how Stan Allens decision plays out with his subscribers. As for me, it's paper or nothing.
magicrobharv
 
Posts: 85
Joined: 04/25/10 05:34 PM

Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/24/10 10:30 PM

It appears that most people don't want to read a digital book or periodical on a desktop or laptop computer. The idea of digital books and magazines got no traction until e-readers started selling.

The iPhone seemed to take things up another notch.

They've now sold lots of kindles, Sony e-readers, and nooks, and with the addition of the iPad (which has a bright color display), things are starting to take off.

Apple has sold 3 million iPads around the world. What tiny sub-fraction of the people who subscribe to a magazine about magic own an iPad? That's the real question.

In the meantime, I'm going to put up my first ebook for sale later this week, an older title that many of you haven't read but should. It'll be a good price and the money will go to a good cause.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20766
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Steve Bryant » 06/24/10 11:49 PM

Loving books, I was opposed to e-books until I started loading novels on my iPod Touch and started reading them when I was stuck alone somewhere (waiting for a movie to start, dining, etc.). Now that I have the larger yet portable iPad, it has given new life to some e-books I already owned, especially nicely designed magic books. Take a look at littleegyptmagic.com/magic.html for a peek at how sensational Tom Stone's books look on an iPad. For over a decade I've enjoyed having (all) my favorite music with me. It's now a kick to have some of my favorite books at hand as well.
User avatar
Steve Bryant
 
Posts: 1674
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Bloomington IN

Postby Kamal » 06/24/10 11:52 PM

Richard Kaufman wrote:What tiny sub-fraction of the people who subscribe to a magazine about magic own an iPad? That's the real question.


I think you've hit the nail on the head, there.

I'm imagining the tiny sliver of a union in the Venn diagram that is, Magic Magazine subscriber iPad owners.
Melbourne Comedy Magician
http://www.kamal.com.au
Kamal
 
Posts: 81
Joined: 08/04/08 07:51 PM

Postby Scott M. » 06/25/10 12:04 AM

I'm happy to hear this and will be curious how e-reader-friendly the Magic version will be. If it's just a digital PDF version like many magazines have right now, I think the impact will be insignificant. If Stan does a version designed specifically for the various e-readers -- i.e., one for the iPad and, if possible, one for Android -- then I think a chunk of readers will migrate towards it. Or, hopefully, the ability to download an issue with the click of a button will increase circulation.

I put out a magazine and I'm in the process of working with a company on an iPad version. Knowing the technology available, my guess is that Magic may be going the PDF route, which would be a shame, I think, because there's so many greater possibilities. (I'm predicting this because there are only a couple of easy publishing platforms out there right now for magazines on the iPad; one is expensive to license, the other won't be more commercially available until the end of the year. The other option is designing in HTML5, which is more developer intensive -- given what Magic's website looks like, I doubt this is what they're doing.)

As for the piracy thing, my magazine currently exists in print edition and as a digital form, and the digital form can be downloaded as a PDF. I have found back issues on file sharing sites and there's been no noticeable hit to our circulation. Of course I'd rather everyone be a paying customer, but given that our magazine has advertisers, I view piracy as giving them additional reach. And hopefully people discover the magazine through piracy and then decide to subscribe.

I'm of the belief that the pace of print magazines to the iPad and readers like it will be swifter than currently predicted.

As for Reel Magic, I think it's great that they have easy to load digital MP4s of each issue on the disk. Makes it easy when I travel. But I think it's kind of a half-way solution. I think he should make the whole magazine available for download.
Scott M.
 
Posts: 159
Joined: 03/13/08 12:42 AM
Location: NYC

Postby Ian Kendall » 06/25/10 03:20 AM

I think I may be in an advantaged position on this, since I get to read an entire magazine PDF every month (I help to proof read MUM). Although I am very much in the 'tactile paper' camp, and love reading books and magazines, I found the process of reading on my PC screen to be far less onerous than I expected it to be.

Using the CTRL+L function of Adobe Reader I can have a full screen image which pages easily, and the result on my 19" screen is larger than the actual magazine itself. I've seen an iPad, and although I'll never own one, I could see how reading a digital magazine on it would not be too much of a hardship.

As for using PDF as a format - it does make sense when you think that the issue already exists in this format for sending to the printer, so to put it out requires very little effort. To recode the whole thing in HTML5 or some propriatory format would be cost prohibitive. It will be interesting to see whether we see videos embedded into the PDF.

Ian
Ian Kendall
 
Posts: 2134
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Edinburgh

Postby mrgoat » 06/25/10 04:02 AM

Richard Kaufman wrote:In the new issue of MAGIC magazine, the editor announces that the magazine will go digital in September. No other details aside from the fact that the digital and paper editions will co-exist.

Your thoughts?


Good for them. Any publisher not prepping NOW for their INEVITABLE digital future will be put out of business eventually.

Everyone can see that, whether we like it or not, from a cost POV, if you can remove the cost of paper, cutting, ink, printing, trucks and planes all over the place distributing them, warehouses to store them, then the pulp costs for the unsold issues etc your business suddenly becomes VERY different in terms of bottom line and profit.

And as Ian mentioned the things you can do, like embed video or offer other interaction is brilliant.

Doesn't matter how many people have an iPad/nook/kindle *now*. It would be like being shown a TV back in the day and rather than work out how to make programs for that rather than radio you stick your head in the sand and say "that will never take off, I prefer my radio plays where you can use your imagination and not have to actually SEE the actors, sets, costumes etc"

Or having a stagecoach business and thinking that cars would never take off. Look how expensive they are! Look how few people own them!
User avatar
mrgoat
 
Posts: 4150
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Brighton, UK

Postby CraigMitchell » 06/25/10 08:06 AM

It's an exciting development - I look forward to seeing what Stan has in store for us !

Now if we can just convince him to give us all a free iPad along with my printed magazine - I'd be a very happy camper ;-)
User avatar
CraigMitchell
 
Posts: 1247
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Magic

Postby mrgoat » 06/25/10 08:11 AM

CraigMitchell wrote:It's an exciting development - I look forward to seeing what Stan has in store for us !

Now if we can just convince him to give us all a free iPad along with my printed magazine - I'd be a very happy camper ;-)


The way Kindle and Nook are dropping their prices at the moment, you are more likely to get one of them as a covermount!

And also, that's not a crazy idea. Videogames consoles are widely sold at a loss, and the money recouped through software sales. So I can see a world where your pdf/ebook reader is literally given away (like razors) and then the profit made from sales of content.
User avatar
mrgoat
 
Posts: 4150
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Brighton, UK

Postby Magic Newswire » 06/25/10 08:53 AM

A year ago, the following article stimulated conversations among the tehnorati on various podcasts. Now that the prices have been dropped so significantly, the numbers change dramatically:

Not that it's anything we think the New York Times Company should do, but we thought it was worth pointing out that it costs the Times about twice as much money to print and deliver the newspaper over a year as it would cost to send each of its subscribers a brand new Amazon Kindle instead.

Here's how we did the math:

According to the Times's Q308 10-Q, the company spends $63 million per quarter on raw materials and $148 million on wages and benefits. We've heard the wages and benefits for just the newsroom are about $200 million per year.
After multiplying the quarterly costs by four and subtracting that $200 million out, a rough estimate for the Times's delivery costs would be $644 million per year.

The Kindle retails for $359. In a recent open letter, Times spokesperson Catherine Mathis wrote: "We have 830,000 loyal readers who have subscribed to The New York Times for more than two years." Multiply those numbers together and you get $297 million -- a little less than half as much as $644 million.

And here's the thing: a source with knowledge of the real numbers tells us we're so low in our estimate of the Times's printing costs that we're not even in the ballpark.

Are we trying to say the the New York Times should force all its print subscribers onto the Kindle or else? No. That would kill ad revenues and also, not everyone loves the Kindle.

What we're trying to say is that as a technology for delivering the news, newsprint isn't just expensive and inefficient; it's laughably so.


One other note. Apple had reportedly shold 3 million iPads. Amazon has sold 2.5 million since it was launched.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/2009/1/p ... z0rruuoTrb
User avatar
Magic Newswire
 
Posts: 2474
Joined: 03/29/08 12:32 PM

Postby Ian Kendall » 06/25/10 09:03 AM

There's something else that I've been discussing with Damian offline. Since the introduction of Acrobat 9 any video that is embedded into a PDF is converted into FLV flash video. Since there is a flash reader built into Reader 9 this takes away the need to have external codecs installed.

Since Apple have very publicly distanced themselves from Flash, that means (effectively) that anyone who wants to embed video into a PDF to be viewed on an iPad is going to have problems. The Mac preview app on desktops doesn't work, either - it needs to be Reader 9.

This leaves a number of possible alternatives, few of which are likely to make inroads. First, Adobe could update Acrobat so that it is possible to embed H.264 video into PDFs. Given their current hissy fit with Apple, I'm not sure they would go to such lengths to appease a group of people who effectively hate them.

Apple could certify Reader 9 to run on the iPad, but from what I've heard it's unlikely to work there, either.

Apple could try to redefine the PDF specs (_highly_ unlikely) or try to push an alternative format (also unlikely, since the majority of content is already going through the PDF route).

Or iPad users could find themselves out in the cold, while Android tablets and the new generation of TabletPCs come into the market place.

Ian

Edit: I've just seen that h.264 _can_ be embedded into PDFs, so I'm off to do some testing...
Ian Kendall
 
Posts: 2134
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Edinburgh

Postby SCobalt » 06/25/10 09:56 AM

Very sad news.
With a market as niche as magicians who are more or less compulsive collectors I am surprised that this move is happening. Many of us love having collections of Magic magazines. This includes the younger magicians as well. A young friend of mine (20-something) literally filled has filled his apartment with magic magazines of all types!

My hat is off to Richard for maintaining the hard copy format! Keep it up Richard!

Small note on piracy too, how many magicians bootleg magazines today? I'd say few if any because it's easier and cheaper to buy them more or less. With a digital copy I'm sure they will be emailed all over the place. Will not be surprised to subscriptions to drop and readership to skyrocket...

SC
SCobalt
 
Posts: 46
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Canada

Postby MagicBilly » 06/25/10 10:12 AM

I can see it now.

For Sale: Vintage Genii e-zines in rare PDF format.

Add to your already wonderful paper collector's edition with this electronic version of...

Opening bid $0.32

---------
Now with respect to codec's, every electronic publisher will now be expected to maintain their archives in the most current codec versions. Sorry no betamax archives permitted. Yes h.264 will someday go the way of the dodo. Can I hear a woop woop for technology, and a Woe No for collectibles.

Aren't we sitting in front of a computer screen enough already. In my 9-5 work-a-day world, I spent over 8 hours in front of a computer screen. Now the new wave wants me to sit in front of a computer screen indefinitely.

Sorry, I prefer paper magazines. O shush up Billy, I'm sorry you choose to visit places without electricity.

hahahaha. welcome to the new world.
Act Happy, Feel Happy, Be Happy with no reason in the World (D. Millman)
User avatar
MagicBilly
 
Posts: 65
Joined: 04/13/08 12:49 PM
Location: Southern Oregon

Postby erdnasephile » 06/25/10 10:39 AM

Richard Kaufman wrote: What tiny sub-fraction of the people who subscribe to a magazine about magic own an iPad? That's the real question.


With respect to Richard, I think the real question is what fraction of people who subscribe to a magic magazine are willing to pay for something they can steal with little effort.

Given how casually many magi thieve each other's performance material, I sadly think that fraction is uncomfortably high.
User avatar
erdnasephile
 
Posts: 2104
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM

Postby Matthew Field » 06/25/10 10:41 AM

Richard -- is this the long-awaited digital version of 'Sexy Magic'?
User avatar
Matthew Field
 
Posts: 2482
Joined: 01/18/08 01:00 PM
Location: Hastings, England, UK

Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/25/10 11:03 AM

Hey Matt, that's a good idea!
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20766
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Scott M. » 06/25/10 11:33 AM

Ian Kendall wrote:There's something else that I've been discussing with Damian offline. Since the introduction of Acrobat 9 any video that is embedded into a PDF is converted into FLV flash video. Since there is a flash reader built into Reader 9 this takes away the need to have external codecs installed.

Since Apple have very publicly distanced themselves from Flash, that means (effectively) that anyone who wants to embed video into a PDF to be viewed on an iPad is going to have problems. The Mac preview app on desktops doesn't work, either - it needs to be Reader 9.

This leaves a number of possible alternatives, few of which are likely to make inroads. First, Adobe could update Acrobat so that it is possible to embed H.264 video into PDFs. Given their current hissy fit with Apple, I'm not sure they would go to such lengths to appease a group of people who effectively hate them.

Apple could certify Reader 9 to run on the iPad, but from what I've heard it's unlikely to work there, either.

Apple could try to redefine the PDF specs (_highly_ unlikely) or try to push an alternative format (also unlikely, since the majority of content is already going through the PDF route).

Or iPad users could find themselves out in the cold, while Android tablets and the new generation of TabletPCs come into the market place.

Ian

Edit: I've just seen that h.264 _can_ be embedded into PDFs, so I'm off to do some testing...


Ian, Adobe is adding an iPad publishing solution directly to its Creative Suite. Files are created in In Design, additional elements -- video, slideshows, audio, etc. -- can be added and then published directly out of the application as an iPad app. This functionality should be available to the general public at the end of the year, although you can see it right now as it's what's been used for the Wired magazine app. Despite the fight with Apple, Adobe is very much fighting to stay in the iPad publishing market. In fact, they rewrote their Wired app in record time when Apple pulled its last minute Flash ban.

The advantage for small press publishers of this solution is that the person who designs the magazine, assuming that the mag is done in InDesign, will be able to make the iPad edition him or herself. Similar (and one can argue, better) things can be done in HTML5, but those will require professional developers to execute.

To the poster who commented about how sad it this whole thing because we are by nature collectors -- I respectfully disagree. I have a bunch of old Genii mags from the 1970s in a storage locker somewhere from when I was a kid. Some day they will be tossed. Now, I've taken to, once a year or so, going through Geniis, rip out and PDF articles I'd like to keep, and toss the magazines themselves. My New York apartment doesn't have room for everything. I'd love to have the entire magazines in a nice, searchable digital form.
Scott M.
 
Posts: 159
Joined: 03/13/08 12:42 AM
Location: NYC

Postby mrgoat » 06/25/10 11:36 AM

SCobalt wrote:
Small note on piracy too, how many magicians bootleg magazines today? I'd say few if any because it's easier and cheaper to buy them more or less. With a digital copy I'm sure they will be emailed all over the place. Will not be surprised to subscriptions to drop and readership to skyrocket...

SC


I bet you ANY MONEY YOU LIKE that when Magic produce the pdf version it will have a positive impact on subscriptions to the physical product.

ANY MONEY.

Same goes for when RK does electronic Genii.
User avatar
mrgoat
 
Posts: 4150
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Brighton, UK

Postby Ian Kendall » 06/25/10 11:46 AM

The advantage for small press publishers of this solution is that the person who designs the magazine, assuming that the mag is done in InDesign


What about those of us who don't use InDesign (or cannot afford it)? I write and layout in Word (which is far from perfect, I know) and then convert and add video using Acrobat Pro. Will they be adding the App export to Acrobat, I wonder...

Ian
Ian Kendall
 
Posts: 2134
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Edinburgh

Postby the Larry » 06/25/10 11:47 AM

mrgoat wrote:I bet you ANY MONEY YOU LIKE that when Magic produce the pdf version it will have a positive impact on subscriptions to the physical product.

ANY MONEY.

Same goes for when RK does electronic Genii.


Finally somebody who understands the digital market. I fully agree with Mr. Goat. Those that will not offer a digital alternative will further slip lower in all metrics that count and those that will offer a digital alternative will find new subscribers and new ways to lower cost and increase profit. Genii will follow suit - will have to! Mr. Kaufman continues to be coy and shy about digital technology. I bet that Genii will have a digital alternative in less than 5 years or it will be out of business.
the Larry
 
Posts: 200
Joined: 12/28/08 08:43 AM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 06/25/10 11:49 AM

It's going to be interesting, agreed. Bruce Sterling and others have written on the fashion and fetish of the tangible. How we keep ideas and history around was also addressed in the Neal Stephanson book. I'll stay off the side issues of unhistory, palimipsests and parochial revisionism as they were pretty much addressed earlier by Stephanson in Anathem.

IMHO this could lead us toward some refinement in how we distinguish the historical from the useful from the commercial. Going properly digital also begs the question of how how we make what are in some sense of the word 'secrets' sufficiently open access that we can also do proper scholoarly work - not reinventing the wheel every time someone tells us that fuschia is the new black.

Onward indeed. Perhaps to where hypertext links to ads, reveiws, citations, illustrations, discussions and video demonstrations abound.

So are they going to link to hogwarts or leave the reader to get rickrolled? Fortune or 4chan? Time to make some choices.
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6691
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 06/25/10 11:55 AM

On a side technical note, there is a discipline known as "configuration management" concerned with making sure artifacts are complete along with the data/tools required to decode/rebuild the original item stored. We started to see that a while ago when database file headers contained data column descriptors. It's an archivist's issue and not one we really need to fret over IMHO. Okay well maybe when folks look back at our innumeracy and imagine that the "n word" was "number". ;)
Mundus vult decipi
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6691
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Scott M. » 06/25/10 11:59 AM

Ian Kendall wrote:
The advantage for small press publishers of this solution is that the person who designs the magazine, assuming that the mag is done in InDesign


What about those of us who don't use InDesign (or cannot afford it)? I write and layout in Word (which is far from perfect, I know) and then convert and add video using Acrobat Pro. Will they be adding the App export to Acrobat, I wonder...

Ian


I don't know the answer but I doubt it. There are already several companies that will create digital magazines in flip book form after you email them your PDFs, and I believe these companies do already allow video. My magazine uses one called Blue Toad. It does publish to iPad, but, again, only as a PDF. I'm not sure if the content is viewed on iPad whether the video shows up.

The iPad publishing solution offers more bells and whistles and is fundamentally a different product.

Interestingly, Ray Kurzweil of all people has announced his entry into this market with an e-reader solution working out of Quark.
Last edited by Scott M. on 06/25/10 12:08 PM, edited 0 times in total.
Reason: Added more detail
Scott M.
 
Posts: 159
Joined: 03/13/08 12:42 AM
Location: NYC

Postby Jim Sisti » 06/25/10 12:10 PM

Jim Sisti
 
Posts: 76
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: New England

Postby Dan Magyari » 06/25/10 12:26 PM

If the "magic" magazines go digital, I will stop purchasing them. I have digital copies of the Gen, Phoenix, and some others, just to have access - but, I hate this format - I print out every page that I want to read - a pain in the ass. I do not enjoy reading them on the computer.

I will cry if they stop their paper publications, but I will not buy them in digital format.

And, one of the reasons I do not currently subscribe to either Genii or Magic (and I've mentioned this to Richard previously) is that it gives me an opportunity to visit the local magic shop. Digital versions will give me an excuse for no more visits to the magic shop - toll the death knell.
Dan Magyari
 
Posts: 54
Joined: 03/21/08 01:56 PM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 06/25/10 12:27 PM

Yeah Jim, and movable typeface forces the reader to feel depersonalized without that handwritten comfort they're used to.

It's not whether you can just ask Alexander but how soon Alexander can handle the traffic.
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6691
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Joe Pecore » 06/25/10 12:33 PM

Dan Magyari wrote:And, one of the reasons I do not currently subscribe to either Genii or Magic (and I've mentioned this to Richard previously) is that it gives me an opportunity to visit the local magic shop.

Could you subscribe to Genii, but give your mailing address as your local magic shop (letting them know you'll be by each month to pick it up)? :)
Share your knowledge on the MagicPedia wiki.
User avatar
Joe Pecore
 
Posts: 1746
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Northern Virginia

Postby Dan Magyari » 06/25/10 12:42 PM

Joe, I'm not trying to be cheap here. The magic shop must make some nominal profit on my issues - probably very nominal. Somehow I don't think that would be appreciated in the "shop".
Dan Magyari
 
Posts: 54
Joined: 03/21/08 01:56 PM

Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/25/10 12:47 PM

The story on CNN that Jim Sisti posted the link for somewhat echoes my own thoughts.

The idea of simply turning a magazine into a pdf or any other format so it can be viewed on any sort of reader (like an iPad) is idiocy.

Once you decide to go digital, there is absolutely no need to work under the constraints imposed by a sequence of pages which a magazine must follow in printed form. You are no longer constrained by the requirements of paper or the printer.

In other words, a magazine is not a book. Books must consist of text and images in a locked sequence--that's what makes them a book. But magazines are a series of pieces ... "content" that doesn't need to be in a particular order. Simply taking your existing magazine file that you've sent to the printer and selling a digtial version of it (even if it includes embedded videos) is the most unimaginative thing in the world. (That's not to say that someday I won't be doing this dumb thing myself, but it really depends on the amount of manpower available to create a digital version.)

A true digital version would be ...

... well, I'm not going to give it all up just yet.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20766
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby the Larry » 06/25/10 12:48 PM

Nobody says it should be ONLY digital. It is an option. If you like print then subscribe to print. If you like digital it is profitable for the magazine to provide digital. The key word is OPTIONS.
the Larry
 
Posts: 200
Joined: 12/28/08 08:43 AM

Postby Ian Kendall » 06/25/10 12:51 PM

To be honest, I have little ambition to publish an iPad app, but since my USP is the inclusion of video in a book I have to consider how playable it would be on various formats.

Acrobat 9 PDFs with video won't play in Preview, but that was with FLV video. I'll be interested to see what happens when I embed h.264 - Reader 9 has the built in flash viewer, but I haven't been able to find out if it has the h.264 codec built in as well. If not, then we are back to the problem of the end user having a codec installed on their machine. If it works I can see myself switching from FLV to h.264 just to avoid the hassle of people complaining that they cannot watch the video on their iPads.

I was thinking about something else this morning; since we were talking about the benefits of embedding video and the fact that the magazines are usually in PDF format anyway, there should be a way to leverage this for the benefit of the magazine and the advertisers.

The main problem is that to embed the video you need a space in the document that can take the video; if you have that in the body of an article then there will be a space in the paper version. The other thing is file size - a PDF of MUM is typically between 10 and 15Mb - I imagine a larger mag like Genii would be closer to 20Mb. When you add video, things can get very large (which depends, of course, on the size and quality of your video).

Since advertisers will already have space in the magazine, perhaps premium ad space could be created that included a couple of minutes of video. It would be easy to replace a print ad with a version that has space for a video window. For example, my Work book on the pass has 41 minutes of video which added 128Mb to the file size. Even if there was 30 minutes of video in the magazine, I think it would be possible to sell that space and keep the file size under 100Mb.

/thinking (too soon, probably).

Ian
Ian Kendall
 
Posts: 2134
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Edinburgh

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 06/25/10 12:58 PM

Consider how it would be if all those jumpy ad boxes and voiceovers in videos called to you by name? Where your preferences resort the content and online updates refine the way the content is presented to you.

personalization can up the ante for copyright protection as well -

And then there's the "adult content version" where ...
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6691
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Ian Kendall » 06/25/10 01:00 PM

Jon, from a compilation point of view this would be unworkable.
Ian Kendall
 
Posts: 2134
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Edinburgh

Next

Return to Buzz