Is this ABD? Transworld dropping their print editions from June
It’s sad but I’m not surprised.
Print is next to impossible now (at least in terms of it being viable financially so that people can have jobs doing it). Thrasher is the hegemonic voice - it crushed everyone else.
Free hopefully will be fine as the pan-European model hopefully means that they’ll be able to garner enough ad revenue to be viable.
As for smaller mags - who knows?
I guess Grey is basically a one-man band so (relatively) cheap, North is similar.
Guy/Reece who do Vague both have other jobs aside from doing the mag.
Sad times but inevitable really.
Considering that TWS was the most ad-heavy of them all, it’s not a good sign.
Saw that. Nice of them to choose what subscribers get. ie, more magazines and not a refund. Company can’t be in great shape.
Skateboarding is in such a weird place at the moment.
I have no horse in the race any more and can sympathise with everyone at TWS that has lost their job due to this.
Is there a demand for mags any more - outside of smaller locally specific ones?
As in, is there a widespread demand for a curated perspective on skateboarding culture?
There’s a thought. The (appropriate) enthusiasm for DIY and local scene-ism could end up being counter-productive. Skateboarding eating itself, and eventually everybody will have their own company, skate their own ‘pro’ board and wear their own shirt. All these one-man operations, keeping it real and suffocating the big guys. I’m only into medium-sized companies anyway now.
Lol. Yeah of course - I can see the irony in my comment above.
Lack of an achor for each national scene or whatever does make me wonder how new talent will be recognised though. Without people looking for new skaters. new scenes, etc etc - desn’t that mean that the brands themselves now control the opportunities in a way they didn’t before?
How do you define a ‘medium sized company’?
not too big, not too small
i subscribed to Transworld for a few years; it was OK - Jaime Owens is clearly a nice guy. but the mag’s lack of personality was disheartening, forgettable even.
Thrasher still manages to be that obnoxious skate mag, without actually being awful/ offensive
The algorithms are now the gatekeepers. Keep an eye on your Instagram explore page and YouTube recommendations. No place for critical thought in our virtual authoritarian state. All hail the Zuckerberg.
In the TJ Thrasher there’s an article about stinking tricks, probably a Bratrud thing, and it obviously mentions benihanas. And at the back of the mag there’s an ad for some new company with a dude doing a non-ironic street benihana.
one of Thrasher’s redeeming factors back when I could stomach them was the shit black and white ads and specifically that Skates on Haight ad with the dude ollieing the bin that must have run for 5 years.
Nah. Print in the way it has traditionally been done through a publisher is next to impossible now.
However, independent print publishing is undergoing a renaissance as the tools of publishing have become more widely accessible. There are far larger numbers of far smaller print magazines than ever before. Power has become decentralised and this is a very good thing. It was never good that a large publishing company controlled the fate of a small magazine, when the mag should be able to control its own fate.
More than ever.
Algorithms are the sales data leading to the distribution decisions. I’ve learned more from Instagram and YouTube in the last 5 years than off any other channel in the previous 15, thanks both to algorithms that show me good things I’ve never heard of and search tools that let me find things impossible to discover beforehand.
In all cases the skills of curation and selection have become more important than ever as a guide for those overwhelmed by the flood.
In summary, despite it appearing to be sad and foreboding that Transworld is stopping print, in reality we are in a better place than we have ever been to produce and consume skate media.
Yep, distributors and paying advertisers have certainly helped a lot of independent magazines get out there in the last few years.
- checks watch *
I could foresee a world bi-annuals or annuals within skateboard media. I think it would be sort of akin to shooting towards a big video, or more pertintently today, video part.
To expand on what I’m envisaging, I always foresee a world where skateboarders will demand something more ‘refined’ within consuming skateboarding content (especially photography) than the disposability of instagram posts. It would need to be produced in a more specialised approach (almost like a video itself) and in a much more considered and curated manner, rather than the current conveyor belt system Thrasher and Transworld operate churning out ephemeral content always playing second fiddle to the internet.
Perhaps I’m just speaking for myself, and that this vision is something that only I’d personally gravitate towards, but not necessarily the rest of skateboarders, however comparing it with how I consume art and (blurgh) ‘culture’, for example, I’m much more interested in really significant quarterly or bi-annually produced magazines or publications rather than the weekly efforts that the newspapers dish out reporting on any old shit for the sake of it.
I don’t think print will ever die, but I think the model needs a drastic overhaul.
the post-digitised Sidewalk best-of issues were exactly this. a proper treat to go through.
but it’s gonna take time and money
a whole lot of spending money
it’s gonna take plenty of money
to do it, to do it, to do it right
Yeah that’s kind of what I meant in the earlier post re working for a mag being a viable job option these days. Whilst the control that Publishing houses had over print media was in many cases negative (at least ultimately) it did mean that some fortunate people were able to have jobs in the various sectors involved in creating mags - whether that be photography/ad lay outs/design/etc etc or whatever. It also meant that contributors were paid and could develop their skills/practice as they did so.
The current situation - as far as I’m aware anyway and as relates to the UK, is one where nobody doing a mag (outside of the examples I gave originally) is able to make a living from it. I may be wrong here though.
Perhaps this will come across as sour grapes on my part but I genuinely don’t mean it in that way - I had my time and am happy to move onto a different career now (fingers crossed) and enjoy skateboarding as a hobbyist.
Decentralisation can be a positive thing but it can also be a negative one - it is neither thing intrinsically, at least in my opinion.
Also, without wanting to sound patronising - hardly any magazines, either big or small control their own fates. Many of the mags operating within the self publishing renaissance are beholden to large shoe brands to survive and their content reflects this.
It’s naive to think otherwise.
That in and of itself isn’t a bad thing either, but I’m struggling to think of any that are not (at least partly) bankrolled by Nike/Cons/Vans and/or adidas.
Does that detract from their independence? Not really, as those are the dictates of the market - even more so now that nearly all mags are free and thus only generate revenue to pay staff/contribs etc through advertising because sales revenue doesn’t exist any more.
So, in a lot of ways your response and this one are in agreement.
Just wanted to pipe up as this might be the first ‘going off’ thread on the new forum.
I love skateboard magazines. Maybe a new format is one answer, Pocket magazines book style is one option although I guess that depends how often it comes out.
Was just thinking of all the iconic skate and i can’t think of one that isn’t TWS.