Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

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Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby zenboy » Mon Jul 04, 2005 9:04 pm

I had been a long time member of the LinuxFormat and subscribed to the magazine for the last three years (grudgingly). This magazine has great info, guides, and tutorials that others magazines don't have. I like the magazine very much, but I found that the magazine price is just enormously overprice here in the U.S. Most magazines are usually in the $3-$$8 range but the Linuxformat magazine is a whopping $15 (not including tax)!! I know that this magazine is great compare to other, but with this outrageous price, I must forgo reading this to something more econmical. Why does it charge so much here in the US? Doesn't it make sense to charge according to the average market price in the US and not base it on the English pound? I believe that the magazine would gain more readers here in the US if the price is moderate and accordingly to the average newstand price.
As for now, the only linux magazines I suscibe to in the US are the LinuxJournal (which I got two years for the price of one year) and LinuxMag (this mag. has become better over time). In order for me to keep in touch with this Linuxformat mag. is to go to the nearest bookstore and seat there with this magazine in one hand and the cappuccino drink in the other, and go through the magazine every month. Many times, I would see many copies of this magazine still on the self barely bought because of the price; which is ok for me because I could read the magazine without worrying if there's a copy left, but the thought of the store stop carrying it due to lack of purchase has me worried.
Does anybody in the US have any concern about the price of this magazine, and wolud like to contribute their thought here? It would be nice to hear comments from the management as well.
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RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Hudzilla » Tue Jul 05, 2005 10:38 pm

Hi Zenboy,

Yes, we're well aware of the US price, but we don't really have any option :/

As you can see on our cover, we print the UK price only. The US copies are priced individually, by the retailer - they could sell for a lot less if they wanted to. Part of the price premium is that the mags are being shipped out from a foreign country, etc, but clearly they are selling enough otherwise they wouldn't bother stocking it at all!

I'd love to suggest a grand solution that solves all the problems, but I don't think there is one. People in some other countries seem to have the same problem, and it's sad. You're absolutely right: if we could figure out a way to halve the price over there, our readership would go through the roof. D'oh!

One suggestion is to join your LUG, and just club together to buy a subscription or two then share it among you. It would drop our copy sales, but gives us happier readers - which is more important ;)


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RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby A-Wing » Tue Jul 05, 2005 10:53 pm

I used to buy the imported US version of Linux Magazine a few years ago, now that was expensive. Quite a good read though, but seemed aimed more at sysadmins at the time.
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RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby jer1ch0 » Tue Jul 05, 2005 11:06 pm

I pay €12 to €13 in Ireland. Most pc mags are expensive here, so i have to be pretty choosy about what to buy.
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RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby A-Wing » Tue Jul 05, 2005 11:25 pm

Maybe there should be a subscription based PDF version aimed at people abroad. Flame me now if this already exsists :)
Either that or get some sponsership money for your local LUG to buy the mags and lend to LUG members or something, I know several LUGs do that.
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RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby jjmac » Wed Jul 06, 2005 11:01 am

Here in Australia it's $17.95 (17 dollars 95 cents) on the shelf. At around 40-41 p per AUS dollar, i think it's comparable to the uk stand price. It just takes forever for the frogman to swim over with it :D

Iv'e noticed that "future" must have given some licence to some publisher over here, as there's a Linux mag thats beeing sold that s using LXF copyart in its' mag. Come to think of it, it did have "future" mentioned on the backpage somewhere. In really small print so it's hard for me to tell (grin)


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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Rhakios » Wed Jul 06, 2005 6:59 pm

A-Wing wrote:Maybe there should be a subscription based PDF version aimed at people abroad. Flame me now if this already exsists :)


Wouldn't dream of it, but I can't see it happening as pdfs are too easy to copy and redistribute. I noticed that some magazines have been experimenting with zinio reader versions, which are supposed to be more secure, but as yet there is no zinio reader for Linux as far as I am aware.
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RE: Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby A-Wing » Wed Jul 06, 2005 7:17 pm

Now you are getting into the realms of DRM, that's a whole different ball game :)
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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Flea » Wed Jul 06, 2005 8:03 pm

Rhakios wrote:I can't see it happening as pdfs are too easy to copy and redistribute.


Yeah right, because there would be, like, widespead piracy of LXF :roll:
Come now, what do you take the LXF readership for? A bunch of 13 yr old "133t d00dz"?
The answer is simple, Just release a pdf version 3 months behind the current release. Those that exclusively download the pdf are unlikely to buy the mag, pdf download or not!

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RE: Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby A-Wing » Wed Jul 06, 2005 8:07 pm

Add a few sponsers onto the PDF to make money for it, I'm sure RackSpace would go for it. I would advertise one of my businesses in it (if I didn't have a heart attack when I saw Future's advertising prices).
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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Rhakios » Wed Jul 06, 2005 8:21 pm

Flea wrote:Yeah right, because there would be, like, widespead piracy of LXF :roll:


Who's talking about widespread piracy, a lost sale is a lost sale. And do you know, there are dishonest shitehawks around every corner.

The answer is simple, Just release a pdf version 3 months behind the current release. Those that exclusively download the pdf are unlikely to buy the mag, pdf download or not!

Dave.


I expect they'd want to leave it slightly longer than three months, I notice that LM leave it about 6 issues. At three months the magazine will still be on the stalls in some countries. I might also point out that an archive of past issues has been mooted before, but nothing has come about. It all requires work for someone, and that has to be paid for, which means selling more magazines, or as A-Wing suggests, more advertising.
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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Flea » Wed Jul 06, 2005 11:58 pm

Rhakios wrote:
Flea wrote:Yeah right, because there would be, like, widespead piracy of LXF :roll:


Who's talking about widespread piracy, a lost sale is a lost sale. And do you know, there are dishonest shitehawks around every corner.


I was being sarcastic. And just how many "lost sales" would there be? No one will ever know until it has been tried. However I agree 6 issues is probably best.

I had actually been contemplating scanning all the old mags (+12 months old) and storing them on CD to save my poor old shelves, what if I shared them over p2p? Is that such a crime? Would LXF lose sales because of that? Would they prosecute me? I doubt they would lose sales and it would be a bit pointless dragging me through the courts :roll:
So if I'm figuring on doing it myself why not release old mags as higher quality pdf's? even 1 yr old mags in a non-drm encumbered format?

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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Rhakios » Thu Jul 07, 2005 12:20 am

Flea wrote:I had actually been contemplating scanning all the old mags (+12 months old) and storing them on CD to save my poor old shelves, what if I shared them over p2p? Is that such a crime? Would LXF lose sales because of that? Would they prosecute me?


You have the chance to ask them here :)

I doubt they would lose sales and it would be a bit pointless dragging me through the courts :roll:


I dunno, are you moderately (but not too) wealthy, it could be worth their while.
:wink:


The real point is that if the suits at Future Publishing thought they could get another 10% in sales by releasing the magazine as an on-line pdf, they would have done it the day before yesterday, if not sooner. Paragons of the journalistic virtues though they may be, I doubt the LXF editorial team have much to say in the matter. And if they do, they can tell you below.
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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby Flea » Thu Jul 07, 2005 12:44 am

Rhakios wrote:I dunno, are you moderately (but not too) wealthy, it could be worth their while. :wink:


Nah, I'm not even moderately wealthy, I'm like the guy who drives an old uninsured Lada, nobody messes with him because he wouldn't think twice about smashing into their nice new BMW. Not worth the hassle :wink:
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Re: RE: Too high price for LinuxFormat in U.S.?

Postby evilnick » Thu Jul 07, 2005 1:40 am

Flea wrote: Not worth the hassle


But it might be worth it just to make you suffer.

There are two broad camps of thinking on this. One being that <gasp> we can't give stuff away free, why would anyone evr buy the magazine, where would it end but the destruction ofsociety, etc,etc,etc.

The other is that it's out of date and wortheless as soon as it is no longer being sold.

I sort of land somewhere in the middle there, for different reasons. I don't think, for example, that a lot of stuff has much value on the web, especially as it would be released after the magazine. six month-old hotpicks aren;t that hot any more, though still worth a look.

We are planning to bring back an archive system of some sorts, based on PDF, but probably not for complete issues, rather just for specific bits we think are worth it.

On the question of overseas prices, these are being monitored more closely now, and I think inparticular the subscription price may come down for some parts of the world soon.
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