Friday, May 14, 2010

more on mags

The WSJ reports on a brand new crowd-sourced magazine, appropriated called "48 Hours Magazine" that was put together on the web over the course of one weekend.

It was all an experiment to use the internet to shake up the old way of producing a magazine. According to Mathew Honan, editor at Wired Magazine and one of the founders of the project, they put out a call to about 5000 likely suspects, asking for submissions, expecting maybe 500 and instead received 1500. From the article:

The magazine was sent to the printers on Sunday. Proofs of the 60-page edition will be back to the editors in about a week, Mr. Honan said, and the magazine will be shipped after that. A Web version is set to go up sometime in the next few days, he added.

There aren’t any subscribers because the magazine will be sold through a print-on-demand service called MagCloud, in another break from the traditional magazine model. So it’s still not clear just how many magazines will be shipped, or even what the exact price will be, although Mr. Honan guessed that it would be about $10 or $11. The magazine has four full-page ads, and with advertising and purchases expects to make enough to pay some of the staff and have money to invest in the next issue.

Mr. Honan said the editors plan to produce another edition of 48 Hours and that he thought the project showed that old media could move more quickly and could take advantage of the crowd-sourcing concept. “If you give people an outlet to do something interesting and cool they’ll kind of flock to it,” he said.

A great experiment and maybe a way to combine digital and print magazine journalism in a way that works. But what I couldn't help wondering when I saw the number of submissions: that's a lot of folks willing to do a lot of work on spec and/or for free. Just one more indication that journalists need day jobs? bk

No comments: