This is a fairly important topic, so I've "copied" the relevant portions of the jverreault's Blog into the magazine section.
jverreault on 11-25-2011 at 01:29 AM (2146 Views)
I just got the latest edition (dec/jan) of Canadian Woodworking & Home Improvement. They have a great cover shot and article on building a Arts & Crafts style cherry night table. Great article, photos, and nice materials list...but wait... where is the drawing of the bloody thing? No where in the mag and I will be damned if I can find a link on the website to a sketch-up file or even a simple pdf of the table.Hi,
Thanks for your comment. I have been considering adding exploded drawings to some of our projects, but it's a tough call. They tend to take up half a page, or more, and that's space we don't have for something else. Some people don't need these sort of drawings, but to others they are quite important. I would love to add the drawings for every project we do, but there are trade-offs.
I will talk about it with our publisher (Paul Fulcher) and see what his thoughts are, as I'm definitely open to adding these sort of drawings.
Thanks again for your comment.
Rob BrownRob, thanks for replying so quickly. Just so you know, I am a long time subscriber (Paul sold me my subscription at the last of Woodworking Shows in Victoria BC several years ago).
I agree with your assertion that "...Some people don't need these sort of drawings..." but those very, very rare birds that can build something without even a sketch are not the vast majority of your readership. Most of use use drawings or plans to build from whether they are our own creations or from a publication. This is especially true of a complex project like an Arts & Crafts style table. Why not just put it up on your website as "online extras" like all of your competitors do? A simple URL for the link on your website certainly doesn't take up half a page. Sorry but I just find it foolish on your part not to provide your readers with this basic info, especially when you are advertising these as projects they can build.
My 2 cents worth. Thanks for letting me vent.
John Verreaultstevenm.....the best place for plans to be available if you dont have space in the magazine would be on the website, posibly even on the forum
an author can easily scan his plans and submit them to a section of the forum in pdf formatRob Brown...You're right. That's the route we may take, but you would be surprised how many of our readers would be very angry with this, as they don't surf the web. A large portion of our demographic doesn't like the internet.
These are the sort of things we have to weigh, as we will not make everyone happy no matter what decision we make.stevenm...taunton press used to publish plans in fww, then went to internet access for plans and then started charging for them as well
imho, plans should be available in the magazine and available as a pdf, i realize that space is money, but plans also sell magazines
im surprised that your demographics show such a large group that dont use the internetRob Brown....I get emails and phone calls from readers who ask for information directly from advertisers, writers, etc. websites because they don't go on the net at all. Strange but true!
In the survey we did a couple years ago exactly 20% of respondents said they build "Simple projects from plans". A little more people said they have "Very little reliance on plans" and the rest said they don't rely on plans at all. Having said that, I think the 20%+ would benefit from the drawings quite a bit.jverrault...Here! Here! I agree 100%
So make them available as printed plans too but those are paid for not free like the downloads for the group who don't use the internet. Why not? The worst that could happen is that you guys make a few bucks. Both sides of the fence are happy and you might just increase your readership.stevenm....i cant speak for those who use plans, im one of those who doesnt use them at all, i simply work from a sketch of my own or a photo.
if publishing them in print is not an option, then a combination of mail order at a nominal fee to cover costs and free internet access to them is an option
charging a significant fee for mailed printed copies or internet access seems "nickel and dime"ing to me, pay almost 10 bucks for a magazine then have to pay another 5 or so to build the project in the magazine just doesnt sit well with me
i dont want to sound callous, but the demo. group that doesnt use the internet is going to "fade" away, like those who refused to have phone service a century ago. i feel that the "print world" is going to be a thing of the past in the next decade, the internet will replace it as a communications tool
i wonder if there is a significant group in the woodworking field in canada that doesnt even purchase/read printed magazines at all, but rely totally on the cww website and forum for information, im almost in that group
i have no idea what the economics are in this scenerio, obviously cww has to make a profit or it all disappears, taunton press charges a fee for access to an expanded website access and that includes plans that used to be printedKris in Toronto....hanks for this, I was wondering as well... Yes, it would definitely be useful to have the plans online.
Rob, you argue that many readers don't go online. How do you know? When did you check this? I mean, if you had a survey "several years ago" it may no longer be valid. Even if this is true, additional online contents, possibly offered for subscribers only, is a way to go. And it will attract new readers...Rob Brown...Hi Kris,
We did the survey about two years ago, so things could have changed a bit. Having said that, I doubt that is people were not interested in the internet two years ago many of them are still not interested.
At any rate we are going to start including drawings (often exploded) in the magazine. It's an additional expense, but one we feel is a good one. Projects are an important part of the magazine and if illustrations are what people want...that's what we'll give them! Our next issue (Feb/Mar '12) has an illustration so people can get the exact design of the....well....you will have to wait until the article comes out to see what the project is.
Thanks all for you comments.
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