New Yorker Magazine history online for subscribers

I recently wrote about the type of content that will drive readers to subscribe to publications, whether the information is consumed through print or online. Well written, edited and hard to access literary and social commentary, it seems, will always be in demand by a percentage of the market. In Australia, The Monthly is a stand-out publication. In the USA, The New Yorker has been grabbing people’s attention since February 21, 1925.

I have written about digital editions of magazines before, by this I mean publications that appear online as page-turning replicas of their print editions. This format has its place and purpose in an increasingly diverse market. The New Yorker, while having a comprehensive website, has recently had every weekly edition of the magazine digitised since February 21, 1925, and is releasing each future issue in this digital format, as well as continuing to publish sample content on their website.

Subscribers to The New Yorker can now access a digital edition of every issue ever published. This is not only a powerful internal tool but a massive driver for subscriptions, from what I have heard. Yes, we all know using historical content is a valuable way to monetise and drive subscriptions, but the structure of that content is what makes it useful.

The New Yorker, October 26, 1929

The New Yorker, October 26, 1929

What made looking at each issue of The New Yorker magazine valuable for me was context. I could look at the entire magazine, cover-to-cover, and see what was happening in New York in, say, October 1929. Including what advertisements were running at the time.

I remember as a child, newspapers used to reprint products such as The War Papers, the papers that came out during The Second World War, for people to collect. It is this contextual formatting that may still interest people, which can now be achieved, easily and cheaply, though online digitisation using companies such as Realview Technologies, the company that worked with The New Yorker.

Certainly, historical content is something that can be offered to subscribers as an exclusive benefit.

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B&T Magazine launches new fortnightly format

Following on from my previous post about the viral marketing campaign B&T has been running at www.deathofsmalltalk.com.au/smalltalk.asp, the newly formatted, fortnightly magazine has started arriving today at subscribers letterboxes.

At the www.deathofsmalltalk.com.au, address an electronic version of the title is available for those who want to browse the content online.

New format for B&T Magazine - also digitised online

New format for B&T Magazine - also digitised online

Update: As you can see from the dead digital link above, B&T have decided to pulled down the online version of the newly formatted B&T magazine. The online edition was only up to give people a taste of what the new format wold look like.

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Emirates dumps paper for digital content

Open Skies magazine, grounded.

Open Skies magazine, grounded.

There’s been a lot of talk about Emirates Airlines canning their inflight magazine, Open Skies, together with other entertainment publications and shopping catalogues as part of a plan to do away with a tonne of paper in the seat pockets of the new A380 “Superjumbos”, thereby reducing haulage weight and fuel usage.

The demise of a publication, particularly one that might signal a trend in a category, is a disturbing one (full disclosure, I’m a board director of Publishers Australia, this country’s industry body for print and digital specialist and B2B media), so I wanted to take a closer look at what was happening. What people haven’t identified is that Emirates is moving a lot of the magazine content onto their inflight entertainment systems as digitised content.  There is no reason why the entire Open Skies publication, all 200 pages of it, couldn’t be designed for access on the iCE inflight system using digital magazine technologies such as Realview Technologies or a number or other similar systems now available worldwide, complete with rich media content including video and audio.

The digitised edition of Virgin's Voyeur magazine

The digitised edition of Virgin's Voyeur magazine

Digital magazines like Virgin Blues’ Voyeur or SportingNewsToday are able to present information in a straightforward, familiar way, easily navigated and consumed by a broad demographic of readers (and this is a key point for product such as inflight entertainment). The touch screen technology of iCE makes digital magazine technology all the more attractive and user-friendly.

Emirates' iCE touch screen inflight entertainment system

Emirates' iCE touch screen inflight entertainment system

Magazines no longer need to be restricted to print; they can be designed and digitised for reading on most new media platforms – web, inflight, mobile, kiosk etc. The question publishers (and marketers) need to ask is, what media format will best suit my customers: a magazine may not be the answer, but often it still is.