[CQ-Contest] what else is lost

Jack Haverty. k3fiv at arrl.net
Sun Feb 2 16:24:22 EST 2014

On Sun, Feb 2, 2014 at 8:58 AM, Tom Osborne <w7why at frontier.com> wrote:

> Do these magazines actually make money from subscriptions or from the
> advertising revenue?  Maybe fewer vendors are advertising in CQ.  I know
> that QST is about half ad's now.  73
> Tom W7WHY

Well, they do take in revenue from ads and subscriptions.   But costs are
rising, e.g., for mailing, printing, etc.    Ad revenue is also likely on a
downward spiral, because print ads aren't worth what they used to be, and
there's many new and more effective places for companies to spend
advertising $s.   Fewer companies buy ads, and the ads they buy can't
command the prices they used to.

So it's increasingly difficult to make a profit.

I managed an "electronic commerce" group at a large software company back
in the early days of electronic commerce.  We got to commiserate with lots
of customers, e.g., big publishers, about this newfangled Internet, and its
role as an opportunity and a threat to their business.   Opportunity if
they embraced it and figured out how to use it.  Threat if they ignored it.
  The story is still being written.

As far as I know, there isn't any prominent Internet-style ham radio
magazine, which seizes that opportunity.   Lots of needed pieces are there.
 For example, there are lots of blogs, websites, forums, etc., that various
hams create and maintain just because they can, and are rich with text,
pictures, and even video.   A simple "magazine" would monitor such sites,
and deliver the particular items of interest to each individual subscriber.
  That includes ads, and if the site is good enough at delivering relevant
ads and content, subscriptions might even be free.

The best of these will think outside the box.  E.G., materials published
online don't get lost in a stack in the basement, and articles published
last year might interest someone next year.  But instead of showing ads
next year that are two years old, they could show new ads that are current
and relevant.  You can't do that with paper.

Take a look at Model Railroad Hobbyist.   I don't have any inside
knowledge, but they seem to be doing it right, in the niche market of model
railroaders.  Not so different from ham radio I think.


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