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Old 14-05-2009, 22:50   #1
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Recommended Magazine Subscription?

Ahoy sailors! I am currently landlocked in the Twin Cities, Minnesota and despite being involved in local sailing culture I have developed a strong desire/dream to live aboard within the next few years (the plan is a little more detailed that that ).

I know there are a few threads discussing reading material (which I will definitely add to my stack) but haven't come across anything about magazines...

Whilst I bide my time away from the open seas (Lake Superior not included) I am wondering if anyone has any recommendations on magazine subscriptions that reflect the cruising lifestyle. "Cruising World" is the first obvious choice, and I have just requested a free copy to check it out. HOWEVER I would really appreciate anyone's and everyone's opinions on this.

Looking forward to seeing your responses.
-Nick
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Old 14-05-2009, 23:49   #2
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For a different slant on cruising lifestyle, check out Latitudes & Attitudes. When you are closer to getting that boat, check out Good Old Boat, which is a fantastic resource for boat maintenance and improvement.
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Old 15-05-2009, 01:54   #3
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Old 15-05-2009, 03:20   #4
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Good Old Boat - Free Sample Issue
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Old 15-05-2009, 06:11   #5
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Unless you are time or budget limited get them all. In my opinion you can't read too much, especially about boats.

Some of the big slick mags do put out articles that are 90% glossed over ads for big, fancy boats or big name gear manufacturers but do still manage to include an interesting and informative article occasionally. Plus you get to look at the photos of 100' multimillion dollar yachts and see what the investment fund managers have done with your money.
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Old 15-05-2009, 06:31   #6
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Most are marketing tools for companies so you don't get too much truth. Sailing, I recall, a large format with nice pics.

I don't read them and don't miss them. But I used to and look forward to them. It was back when I was on a different part of my learning curve. Internets work much better. I am also not interested in new boats as I am not in the market for a boat - so reviews and so forth have little interest to me.

Print is going to the way of the dodo bird - advertising did it.
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Old 15-05-2009, 06:49   #7
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Another vote for Good Old Boat. They have lots of info / projects that will help you prepare for cruising and make life better when you go.

Some of the 'Sail' type magazines are not worth the money IMHO. I have subscribed to many over the years but Good Old Boat is the only one that really gets read.

Click the link Gord added above, they will send you a free issue to check out.
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Old 15-05-2009, 10:17   #8
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Some very good points here made about the amount of advertising in magazines like Cruising World and the rest. It was always a turn off to me when year after year they would have a boat of the year and magically it was one of their advertisers boats. The other beef I had was the limited scope of opinions on tech and sailing matters. It was the same writers over and over again. I could count on one hand the writers.
It is true that paper is going extinct. There is almost an unlimited amount of information on the Internet.
Perhaps a better question would have been..."Recommended Internet Sites".
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Old 15-05-2009, 10:44   #9
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Print may indeed be on a descending path, but I doubt that it is going extinct. But more to the point, advertising didn't do it in.

In fact, for a very long time in the US, and elsewhere, advertising is what made it possible. Without the paid advertising business model, any number of media would never have been possible. And, where someone may have made the effort to gather and distribute information to an information-consuming public without advertising, the cost/copy would have been astronomical, resulting in a thin veneer of the elite with access to information. Hardly a good thing.

It is the internet that has put the blade to the jugular of advertiser-supported print media. And don't get used to the idea that all content on the internet will forever be free. There is no business model that supports this premise.

As this medium (the internet) evolves, the means to cover the overhead will likewise evolve. Because the advertising model has proven successful for scores of years, that is the most likely direction for the evolution to take.

"Everybody" hates advertising - until they want something. It's impossible for product or service providers to know who wants and/or needs information about what they have to offer precisely when that information is most useful. Therefore, the broadcast method is the simplest to employ - put the word out as compellingly as possible to as many consumers as possible, measure the results, then repeat, repeat, repeat...

The alternative is narrowcasting, whereby the product or service is narrowly focused at a consumer population that is already a de facto target audience. It's why manufacturers of sailing-related products advertise in media devoted to sailing, or why auto related products are advertised on NASCAR race broadcasts.

It isn't really all that complicated.

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Old 15-05-2009, 10:55   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
Some very good points here made about the amount of advertising in magazines like Cruising World and the rest. It was always a turn off to me when year after year they would have a boat of the year and magically it was one of their advertisers boats. The other beef I had was the limited scope of opinions on tech and sailing matters. It was the same writers over and over again. I could count on one hand the writers.
It is true that paper is going extinct. There is almost an unlimited amount of information on the Internet.
Perhaps a better question would have been..."Recommended Internet Sites".
To your point about the Boat of the Year editorial content appearing in the same issue with advertising content for that same vessel: It is impossible to know - from outside the business offices of the publication - which came first, the BotY selection or the ad placement. Both have long lead times, so there is undoubtedly a connection, but it could simply be that the editorial content is assembled, the results are arrived at, and the information is made available to the ad sales staff to solicit ads from the "winners."

It would be the perfectly logical way to do it, and it doesn't compromise the editorial process. Many suspicious people, I know, will say "Yeah, sure," but unless you've worked in publishing, I don't think you can appreciate how ferociously the editorial staff fights for their independence and their credibility. Those are their most cherished possessions.

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Old 15-05-2009, 11:50   #11
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Print may indeed be on a descending path, but I doubt that it is going extinct. But more to the point, advertising didn't do it in.

In fact, for a very long time in the US, and elsewhere, advertising is what made it possible. Without the paid advertising business model, any number of media would never have been possible. And, where someone may have made the effort to gather and distribute information to an information-consuming public without advertising, the cost/copy would have been astronomical, resulting in a thin veneer of the elite with access to information. Hardly a good thing.

It is the Internet that has put the blade to the jugular of advertiser-supported print media. And don't get used to the idea that all content on the Internet will forever be free. There is no business model that supports this premise.
TaoJones
We seem to agree on the facts at hand but our conclusions from it differ. The fact that advertising makes the cost of the rag possible at the same time is its downfall. Many people like myself became sick and tired of page after page of advertising and canceled their subscriptions. I don't live in isolation. I am around many in the boating community and it has come up in conversation many times why we don't subscribe anymore.
As for the Internet being the knife to the juggler of advertising. So true. It's true because the Internet is an obvious place to turn. As for the Internet not remaining free...I think that is a stretch. Sites stay on with minimal advertisement. There is not a staff to support or a building to pay rent on. If they were to charge, we would merely move onto another one which didn't.
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Old 15-05-2009, 11:52   #12
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To your point about the Boat of the Year editorial content appearing in the same issue with advertising content for that same vessel: It is impossible to know - from outside the business offices of the publication - which came first, the BotY selection or the ad placement. Both have long lead times, so there is undoubtedly a connection, but it could simply be that the editorial content is assembled, the results are arrived at, and the information is made available to the ad sales staff to solicit ads from the "winners."

It would be the perfectly logical way to do it, and it doesn't compromise the editorial process. Many suspicious people, I know, will say "Yeah, sure," but unless you've worked in publishing, I don't think you can appreciate how ferociously the editorial staff fights for their independence and their credibility. Those are their most cherished possessions.

TaoJones
"Yeah, sure"...
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Old 15-05-2009, 12:00   #13
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Cruising World used to be good, but any more it's too many ads and not enough content. Sail mag seems to be just as good anymore and is only about $12 a year! Better mags listed above, but there has been some really good info in Sail the last couple of years.... especially for the newbie....
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Old 15-05-2009, 12:03   #14
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<snip>As for the Internet being the knife to the juggler of advertising. So true. It's true because the Internet is an obvious place to turn. As for the Internet not remaining free...I think that is a stretch. Sites stay on with minimal advertisement. There is not a staff to support or a building to pay rent on. If they were to charge, we would merely move onto another one which didn't.
Well, you may think there will always be someone giving away the content you want, but I assure you that in the wake of the destruction of well-established information providers (think newspapers), and their replacement by some un-vetted blogger with questionable credentials, you will rue the day.

Just as we are what we eat, we are also what we read. And, as has long been noted in the computer world - GIGO.* There are people who willingly pollute their bodies with Cheetos; why pollute your mind with the informational equivalent?

* garbage in, garbage out.

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Old 15-05-2009, 12:41   #15
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Tao is right on here. The revenue from the advertising is what makes media, print or digital, affordable. I do believe that that's how Cruisers Forum pays the bills. If not for the ads your daily paper would not be $0.25 but $2.50 or more.

The reason I gave up on most of the slick sailing mags is not the ads per se although I really, really, really hate those stupid blow in post cards and cardboard inserts that keep you from being able to turn the pages. The main problem for me was that the line between the "articles" and ads became increasingly blurred. Add the fact that most of the featured boats were priced at a level that I couldn't afford if I won the lottery and the interest level for me became minimal.

Another thing Tao has right, one doesn't like the ads until it's time to buy a reverse threaded, metric widget. Then all the widget ads become very interesting.
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