Monday, July 30, 2007

BoSacks Readers Speak Out: On Wholesalers, Reader's Digest, and Potter

BoSacks Readers Speak Out: On Wholesalers, Reader's Digest, and Potter

Re: Wholesalers are not Dying . . . they are Committing Suicide
It is about time that someone finally put in print what some people have been saying for a long time. Thank You!!!!

It is time that the w/s community realize that they are a delivery service for the magazine industry and that they do a semi good job at that, however when they start analyzing the delivery system this is where they are failing.

Good for you Bo keep up the great job and maybe someone at the w/s level will start listening and doing what you are suggesting.
(Submitted by a Senior Wholesaler)

Re: Wholesalers are not Dying . . . they are Committing Suicide

This is by far the GREATEST article I have read over the past 12 years describing the utter futility of the newsstand single copy industry. The nail was hit directly on the head. Unfortunately the people who should be reading this, will probably dismiss it as pure fluff. What a shame, they still have there heads up their be-hinds.
(Submitted by a new and Unknown Reader)

Re: Wholesalers are not Dying . . . they are Committing Suicide
One of these days Wal-Mart is going to get their way and the publishers will deal with them direct and cut out these folks. Last time I heard, "Wally-World", as we call them here, account for over 25% of newsstand sales, why not deal direct? Save a bunch of money regarding distribution costs and probably knock off 33% of the cover price to the customer, what a concept.
(Submitted by a Paper Person)

Re: Wholesalers are not Dying . . . they are Committing Suicide
Bo, thanks for the best, most interesting news delivery system in our business. I never know what you will send out each day, but it is always of interest to me and my career. You have improved my ability to understand this industry ten-fold.

As to the newsstand situation it is part and parcel of the bigger picture of an old and formerly honorable business gone to the dogs. Everyone scrambling to endue another year or two, as the industry changes and the management at best treads water.
(Submitted by an Unknown Reader)

RE: Saving the Magazine Business
Bob, I worked for Reader's Digest for 12 years. The company lost it's editorial way a long time ago. Now that RDA is owned by an investment group, they will do everything and anything to turn a profit. The prior management only knew how to stay the course and siphon off the profits at the detriment of the employees and stockholders.

Sound advice from Mr. Husni, just a couple of decades too late.
(Submitted by a Sr. Director of Production)

Re: Young Adults Are Giving Newspapers Scant Notice
Why? Is it because the "NEWS" is not the news, but editorial. It does not have various opinions and ideas. Objective reporting, factual information. Opposite opinions is reporting. I read numerous newspapers and most come from a specific side. I may be a dying breed. If one of them could really be "fair and balanced" and objective that would be refreshing.

But, the reality of it all is that money runs the news and objective and balanced information is not. No wonder we have a society that allows misinformation and ignorance. No wonder we are in the predicament we're in.
(Submitted by a Senior Print Salesman)

Re: Young Adults Are Giving Newspapers Scant Notice
No surprise here! Why should the under 30's pay attention to the news? When I was under 30, I read three papers every day, and I had a very good reason to pay attention to the news. There was a war on, and my selective service board classification was changed to 1A from 2S the day after college graduation. Why not solve two problems at the same time - the army's inability to meet their recruitment quotas without enlisting stupid, fat felons, and the declining newspaper readership among young people. Bring Back the Draft! As our President, who also does not read newspapers would say, "What, Me Worry?"
(Submitted by a Senior Production Director)

RE: "Why Print Really Could Die":
Hi Bob. I tend to agree with you and I base my findings on my own magazine stack. I used to subscribe to 2 or 3 times the number of magazines I get today. I make up the difference with a variety of e-content offerings including blogs. I subscribe to approximately 200 different RSS feeds that help me keep up with everything, and on a true, real-time basis.
(Submitted by an Unknown Reader)

Re: Magazine's shelf life has no boundaries
National Geographic isn't the only magazine people hoard; over 85% of my readers surveyed keep their issues, too. And back issues (which I reprint when I sell out the original printing) can sell for as much as 50% above the original cover price. If you publish a quality product dedicated to your readers, they will respond with loyalty beyond the norm.
(Submitted by a Publisher)

Re: Harry Potter and the Reading Phenomenon
If the Scholastic-sponsored survey is to be believed, and 51 percent of all children didn't read books for fun until Harry Potter came along, your thanks to J.K. Rowling should be echoed by parents throughout the land, since she's doing their work for them. While millions of kids were introduced to the joy of reading by the Potter Buzz, where were their mothers and fathers... watching TV? It's irresponsible to leave essential child-rearing duties to a surrogate. Something stronger than peer group pressure should draw kids to bookstores.

If more parents read to their children, took them to the library, and recommended other great children's books, we'd soon have a more literate, more intelligent society. Parents who care about the future might see a higher return on their tax dollar if they lobbied for books instead of computers.
Submitted by a Publisher)

Re: Harry Potter and the Reading Phenomenon
Bob, as I remember it school turned me off to reading. Look at the schools' summer reading lists....boooring. Who wants to read something because they have to and with a topic does not even interest them? Funny how this phenomenon came out of the private sector and not the schools. Wow what and Idea! Create a book series for kids with a topic that interests them! If we want kids to read we are going to have to make it interesting for them. There is too much out there in the line of interactive media for kids, if we want them to pickup a book it is at least going to have to interest them.
(Submitted by a Senior Paper Manager)

Regarding the "speaks out" commenter below (and Bob, please pardon my cross
comment): Re: Saving the Magazine Business

There is no way the present, mostly female management, can turn this thing
around. They are not only going to propel the demise of Readers Digest, but also
their other titles.

The "paper person" opens his missive with "There is no way the present,
mostly female management, can turn this thing around.". I have a question
for "paper perrson". How many paper companies have even come close to
returning the cost of capital in the past 15 years. None. How many are run
by men? Every single bloody one. This guy is an idiot. No wonder they are
running scared.
(Submitted by an Unknown Reader)

Re: Hungry for Younger Readers, Publishers should Embrace their Voices

Hungry for younger readers? What a load of rubbish. I have been a media freak all my life; when I found a writer, reporter or columnist I liked, I looked for his or her byline: I didn't know how old they were and I didn't care. The Des Moines Register, once one of the country's best newspapers, is now printing commentary from young people, because it's cheap or even free, and maybe the Register thinks it's going to bring them younger readers. (The Register also puts out a free weekly for young people called Juice, which is a bad joke.) Sorry, but several generations have not been taught, or taught themselves, what to read and how to read it. They are not going to tear themselves away from their video games to read each others' boring crap.

Larry Atkins writes, "Nationally, almost every syndicated columnist is over 30." I'm sure that virtually all of them are way over 30, so what? What is this, "don't trust anybody over 30" time again? Didn't we go though that a long time ago? Sure, newspaper editors should be on the lookout for talented young people, but they have trouble paying the people they've got. The serious problems lay elsewhere.

. . . Still Reading

(Submitted by an Unknown Reader)

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