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The Magazine

Discussion in 'AP Magazine Feedback & Suggestions' started by Roy5051, Feb 8, 2014.

  1. Roy5051

    Roy5051 Well-Known Member

    After buying AP regularly for over 20 years, I now only buy it when something I find interesting catches my eye on the cover, which is about once a month. Naughtily, even if I am not going to buy it, I tend to scan the Letters page, and am pleased to see that there are now fewer "Forum" letters printed, which was one of my complaints last year.

    The other thing I notice, since Christmas, is the reduction in pages from 90 to 82 (excluding the back cover); is this now going to be the extent of the pages in the magazine in future, along with the quiet little prices rises?:)
  2. PhotoEcosse

    PhotoEcosse Well-Known Member


    As a relative newcomer to this chatroom, please allow me to comment.

    I first started taking AP regularly in 1958.

    Since then, I have subscribed to numerous photographic magazines in addition to AP. Last autumn I was horrified to discover that I was paying direct debits for 14 different photographic magazine subscriptions. I took immediate action to rectify that stupidity!

    But what it did show me was that AP was, by a huge margin, the best on the market. I now just have my AP subscription and a subscription to Practical Photography (which was, incidentally, the other mag that I had regularly read since the 1950s). I now only buy others as one-offs at airport bookstalls.

    I shared your annoyance that "letters" were being moved over from this chatroom to the proper "Letters" page of the magazine and, like you, I am pleased that it has diminished somewhat.

    Not so worried about the page count. I have a long history of involvement in magazine production and it is quite usual for pagination to vary on a seasonal basis. In part (not saying this is the case with AP) that can be determined by seasonal factors affecting advertising revenue.

    Stick with it.

  3. Barney

    Barney Well-Known Member

    I would much rather a magazine printed genuine posts from its associated forum than make up letters, which is the alternative if the quantity and/or quality of letters received don't cut the mustard.
  4. Nigel_Atherton

    Nigel_Atherton Group Editor

    As as already been pointed out here, the pagination does go up and down depending on various factors which includes the peaks and troughs of advertising at different times of the year.

    As for letters, these days we get very few physical letters though the post, most are emails, but when there aren't enough of them worthy of publication we use forum posts to fill the space. Given that only a small percentage of the magazine buyers read the forums we don't see this as a problem.
  5. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Nigel,

    But how do we get more people onto the forum? And how do we "monetize" (for want of a better word) the forum? My understanding is that advertisers now look at "readership", including on line.

    Advertising obviously has its drawbacks, but how many people would buy a magazine that was not cross-subsidized by advertising? Although I would cheerfully pay £10 a copy for an advertising-free AP if I could, I can't afford £510 a year, so God bless the advertisers. The more so as the real printed magazine is in competition with the "free" interweb.

    Of course it is true that "if you are not paying for the product, you ARE the product." Which is why magazines are a thousand times better than Facetube or Youbook.


  6. AlexMonro

    AlexMonro Old Grand Part Deux

    Some, maybe even most, of the adverts printed in the magazine are interesting enough for me to read on a fairly regular basis, even if I'm not specifically planning on buying something. So I have no complaints there if they also help subsidise the cover / subscription price.

    As to forum posts appearing in the mag, occasionally it's made me aware of interesting threads that I've missed - I don't have time to follow every forum in depth. I've also seen some of my forum posts appear in the mag, which is a bit of a buzz, although a couple of them were things I didn't think were particularly good.

    I was very pleased to see the detailed dynamic range graphs (re)appear in the D800E / A7R comparison test, for too long we've just been referred to the DXO site. The new graph, covering the full ISO range, is even more useful than the ones I remember.

    The thing I'm least happy about with the changes in the mag is the loss of Ivor Matanle's Classics to Use articles. Ian Burley's piece on the Pentax *ist DL (I'm still convinced that that name put Pentax back 5 years in the DSLR race! :) ) was sort of interesting, but not really the same, and Ian has mentioned in a post here that he's not planning on covering many film cameras, let alone the ones I would really think of as classics, i.e. more than 50 years old.

    The Photo Insight, and Features on Photographers such as the David Baker and Aaron Yeoman articles, are part of what sets AP apart from most other photo mags, but perhaps 3 in one issue could be too much of a good thing. Perhaps we could spread them a little more sparingly, and still have room for an occasional helping of Ivor?
  7. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Well-Known Member

    I suppose I must declare an interest as I have had a small number of Forum letters published.
    However There is bound to be some interaction in both directions between the Magazine and the forum. This thread is a case in point. As it is discussing the magazine content on the forum.
    There is of course a greater on-line tie up than that, in that the AP has a web site that shows news and other items, that are later printed. It is also fair to mention that the entire magazine is available to purchase on-line in digital form...
    In essence we chose the format we wish to read... overlap is inevitable.

    As photography forums Go this one is fairly poorly attended. It is also fairly outdated software wise, but it works. A few forum letters reprinted in the magazine should, over time, increase the awareness of this forum amongst AP readers.
  8. Fen

    Fen Well-Known Member

    A lot of people do that with all sorts of magazines. I only buy PC Gamer when there is something of interest inside.

    Naughtily, even if I'm not going to buy them, I tend to pinch a few grapes and nibble the occasional doughnut. I put the rest of the doughnut back of course as I don't want to buy it :D

    Nigel has already explained about the page count... but if you only read the letters pages for free, how do you find yourself at page 82?

    Not very quiet really... The price is printed on the cover, where it has always been. Name something (that wasn't already inflated) that hasn't gone up in price recently, doughnuts certainly have.

    Have you considered a subscription? That's cheaper, but then you don't buy it regularly...
  9. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Subscription is win win. The subscriber never misses the issue that they really wanted and the publisher has a certain sale albeit at a slightly reduced price. I'm guessing that the RM costs of distribution are not that far off distribution costs through the likes of WH Smugs and ASDA.
    I subscribe to AP, BJP, and Digital Photo. I've been intending to cancel the latter for yonks. I must get round to it; they seem to be recyclying their over the top post process articles on an annual basis.
    In different ways AP and BJP both give good value. I don't see AP and BJP as competitors; they are complementary.
  10. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    There's always "the other Ivor" to consider :eek:
  11. Barney

    Barney Well-Known Member

    Indeed, well since BJP went monthly at least.
  12. Robert1978

    Robert1978 New Member

    Hi, apologies if I'm in the wrong area/thread. I'm not into photography but signed to this site purely to see if there was anyone interested in some Amateur photographer magazines I have? In clearing out my loft I've discovered hundreds of them dating back to the 1970s left by the previous owner. They are all in perfect condition and seems a crime to throw them away if they are of any interest to anyone. I don't want any money for them.
    Roger Hicks likes this.
  13. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Robert,

    Where are you? No use to me as I'm in France but there really should be someone, somewhere near you, who is interested.

    Thanks very much for your thoughtful and generous post.


  14. Robert1978

    Robert1978 New Member

    Hi Roger, I'm in Newbury, Berkshire. Cheers
  15. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Learning likes this.
  16. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    BJP have just put up their price. Ten quid, but a penny, up for one time buyers, something still just about reasonable for subscribers.
    My quote from Feb 2014 almost still stands. I now get PP instead of Digital Photo; I really must get round to cancelling.
    BJP and AP are as complementary as ever. I want both.
  17. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Where is Barney?
  18. Nigel_Atherton

    Nigel_Atherton Group Editor

    Hi Robert, we're missing a few from our archives so we may be interested in getting those off you. (We have a list somewhere, which I'd need to locate). Other than that I'd be happy to publish this as a letter in the magazine to see if there are any takers.
  19. Bazarchie

    Bazarchie Well-Known Member

    I am interested and as I live in Reading you are quite close. If any are the ones missing from the AP archives I would forward them.
  20. Nigel_Atherton

    Nigel_Atherton Group Editor


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