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If you are a member of IPMS/Canada, you'll notice that they've gone to having 4 printed magazine issues (RT) a year and they distribute an e-zine (BeaveRTales) emailed to all members 4-6 times a year.

 

This seems to be a great way to get more content to the members and still have a printed magazine for the Luddites or those who just prefer a hard copy magazine.

 

Is this something IPMS/USA should consider?

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Last I heard, about half of IPMS/USA either did not have or did not have access to a computer. Don't know if this is a facet of the greying of our society or what. I think Canada uses that email thing for "business" type stuff, so that would mean half our membership wouldn't "get the word" instead of the usual 10-20% that just don't listen even when told.

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Actually, IPMS Canada's "beaveRTales" e-newsletter is not really for 'business' type stuff. Our printed publication, RT, is like most IPMS branch magazines, i.e. modelling articles. In beaveRTales we try to present more news about the organization and IPMS in general, some shorter articles and reviews which wouldn't work well in RT; some 'Pics from the past'; occasional quizzes where member can win prizes; a bit of humour, etc. As the saying goes, "RT is about our models. beaveRTales is about us". You can download a copy and see for yourself at http://www.ipmscanada.com/ipms/ipmsRT.html

 

Bob

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Bob:

 

Its a good idea and has been discussed a couple times previously and what Ron said is why it is not done. And having inly 50% of the e-mail addresses doesn't mean that the others don't have e-mail as much as they don't share it with us..maybe

 

Dave

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Bob:

One other thing, we also went and looked at different printers for the Journal and bid it out. Kept the quality and saved 12% or about $8000 a year. It helped offset the postal costs

 

Dave

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Actually, IPMS Canada's "beaveRTales" e-newsletter is not really for 'business' type stuff.

Bob

 

You say "Beaver Tales" and I think "Beaver Tails" and start drooling...

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Last I heard, about half of IPMS/USA either did not have or did not have access to a computer. Don't know if this is a facet of the greying of our society or what. I think Canada uses that email thing for "business" type stuff, so that would mean half our membership wouldn't "get the word" instead of the usual 10-20% that just don't listen even when told.

Ha! Hey, I resemble that statement... ;^P What!? No, I didn't pet a turd! Perhaps a bird, but...

 

In fact, 'e-pub' functionality is mirrored by the forum and the NATS website content. They are all outlets that require access to the internet (via some device, not just a computer...) So in effect, much of the content is already digitally distributed. I like the paper Journal because it is more 'reading room' friendly than my laptop (sploosh! Well, there goes that mouse!) but it is more important for those who are offline by choice or otherwise.

R/

Robert

Edited by rbeach84

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There is a place for all formats, but I would suggest not at the expense of any particular one. Should the Journal drop to four issues or even disappear? Not unless it reaches the point that cost is so exorbitant that literally no one would pay for it. Over the decades (that makes me sound older than I am), I've published hundreds of print articles & columns along with three print books, dozens if not hundreds of internet columns, CD-ROM photo galleries, downloadable PDF articles, ISO files and am now producing ebooks in multiple formats. Oh, yeah, I also have five slide shows on youtube. I'm definitely familiar with both print and digital publications.

 

Still, for all that, anyone who grew up with a love of reading and physical books will tell you that there's an indefinable special 'something' that happens when you kick back with a printed book, Journal or model magazine that digital versions simply can't match. In a way, it's like the difference between creating a digital model on a computer screen and building a physical model from a Tamiya (or brand of your choice) kit.

 

Richard

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I agree that having a printed copy in your hand satisfies differently than reading from a screen. I love books but I do a lot of things online like most people now. What about a two tier model? One rate for print and a cheaper rate for e-published. Some publishers have used that with success. I'm sure you all have already addressed that though.

 

Just as an aside I must say I have a hard time believing only half of us have regular internet access. I'm 48 and have been in the tech field since the early 90's. I don't think I'm that different from the rest of us. Maybe I am though. :smiley23:

Edited by JimDeck

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Just as an aside I must say I have a hard time believing only half of us have regular internet access. I'm 48 and have been in the tech field since the early 90's. I don't think I'm that different from the rest of us. Maybe I am though. :smiley23:

 

I think the last time we checked was at least 5 years ago; I can believe that has changed as home computers have trickled down to parents as their kids have upgraded their equipment. My father is 78; he swore he would never use a computer until my sister gave him an old Dell XP system - now he is hooked on ebay and webmd (I'm not saying its a good thing). But for all that, I still can't get him to use email...

 

Don

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I can immediately name three members of my Chapter who do not have computers and do not want them. One is the Chapter president. As CC I call him with news he needs to know.

 

Ed

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I'd suggest that it has as much to do with your specific needs as anything else. I'm 71...yeah, I know, I'm older than dirt...and could not function without a computer and related digital equipment. Of course I'm probably the exception that proves the rule due to my business. As most of you know, I'm a freelance writer/professonal modelbuilder. I've been working with computers for at least 20 years. Currently I'm producing ebooks and converted to digital photography back in 2008. All of my writing...even for the two print publications I write for on a regular basis and a couple of times in the Journal...are written and submitted in digital form. Why did this happen? Because the publishers demanded it, refusing to buy your work unless it was in digital form.

 

No matter how we try to avoid it, we are all reliant on computers to some degree. Is this a good thing? Sometimes yes, sometimes no, but the truth is that those who do not have and do not want them are a vanishing breed. There will be plenty of us around that don't necessarily want computers, but it is becoming essential for everyone to have one in some way shape or form. Heck, I have my own love/hate relationship with computers and the digital world. I prefer print books and love film photography for example.

 

Print books are fighting a rear guard action...20% of all new books are digital...and film photography is almost as rare as the Coelacanth. Worse, there are some people out there who are trying to get rid of your home inkjet printer. Yep, they claim that it won't be long before anyone will want to print anything and paper will disappear!

 

Technology rolls on and we get run over in the process!

 

Richard

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Great discussion! I for one think it would benefit the Society to look very hard at the concept of going over to a digital edition of the Journal on a member by member basis (as Jim Deck suggested, offering a reduced membership rate for those getting their pubs digitally.) The cost of Journal production is an eye opener for sure -postage alone is a killer! The impact, however would be that the overall costs would be lowered and I suspect the savings would be significant enough to allow more of the Society's resources to go to other initiatives. But again, a lot of variables would come into play, including the increased printing cost of the Journal if it drops below certain volume.

 

In short, if we conduct a cost/benefit analysis (I volunteer to help!) & publish the results to the membership, then we can make a collective decision on the matter. It may come down to just some percentage below 50% would opt to go paperless but I see the capacity to do so must already be in place - as noted, the Journal masters must be digital to begin with before going to the printers, so one short step further to publish it in PDF format - the savings would be immediate and essentially low cost (I know reliable & fast hosting would be an issue - in short, the actual mechanism of delivery wouldn't be entirely "free"...)

 

Think of the possibilities diverting some of the Journal overhead would offer. For example, it might allow for an annual decal sheet, or production of an annual Society 'research project' publication covering areas of interest. What if we could produce a digital archive of past Society pubs so all 'pre-digital' content could be purchased by the membership? (I could do with the possibility of clearing out some filing cabinets - though I would want to look very hard at the reading interface!)

 

To the point, the Journal's content is what it is, regardless of the format in which it is distributed. We would be silly to ignore the possibilities of current tech when creative leverage of the available tools can benefit the Society by allowing us to expand our 'reach' through easier access (for some) and more affordable membership costs. As was discussed at the Webmasters' Gab Breakfast, the goals are the same just some of the tools have changed. To deny this reality is equivalent to wanting to go back to using a brush after mastering the airbrush...

 

Regards, Robert

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Robert, I think we will eventually go there, but unless you make a near complete transition to electronic production, the cost savings wouldn't be as great as you think. (of course, the postage cost would go lower.) The cost of producing a printed magazine is all in the first copy printed. The paper and ink for subsequent copies is in the scheme of things, pretty low.

 

On another point you raise, back issues, I am all in favor of making the back issues of the Journal and previous publications available digitally. Heck, I'd even give them away, but if we could sell them and close the current budget gap, that would be great too. I have a lot of the old publications, and there is a ton of useful info in them that is lost to current members.

 

FREE THE INFORMATION!!!

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Robert and David, you both make some excellent points. Since we still have a fairly substantial number of members...as far as we know...who are computer Luddites, the only way to make the digital approach work is what FineScale Modeler is doing: Print and digital editions running in parallel. In addition, the digital edition provides additional material that isn't in the print edition. The problem with this approach where we are concerned is that, instead of reducing the cost of Journal production, we would be increasing it.

 

David, as far as your other point, a digital archive of all IPMS/USA publications that have been produced over the last fifty years, that is an excellent idea. If that is done, it needs to be freely available to any paid member. I have quite a lot of the early publications...as soon as I can figure out where they are. In particular, the early years of the IPMS Quarterly and Updates.

 

Richard

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SNIP

 

David, as far as your other point, a digital archive of all IPMS/USA publications that have been produced over the last fifty years, that is an excellent idea. If that is done, it needs to be freely available to any paid member. I have quite a lot of the early publications...as soon as I can figure out where they are. In particular, the early years of the IPMS Quarterly and Updates.

 

Richard

 

Sadly Richard, I have been advocating for this for 10 plus years. I've even scanned some of the back issues. I don't know why we don't make this available. Its not doing anyone any good locked up in a few old members basements.

 

FREE THE INFORMATION!!!!

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David, one reason might be the variation in scanners, scanner programs and scanner skills. Then there's simply the sheer amount of time that'd be required. Plus you'd have to have someone to put all the resulting files on a new section of the IPMS website...more work for the webmaster...and on and on. Another possibility would be, for those of us with at least some of the publications and the ability, to turn the publications we have into pdf ebooks and made available to the membership for a nominal sum...some small amount to recompense us for the time involved. Remember, most of the scans are going to have to be tweaked or otherwise adjusted for optimum viewing...and the majority of our older pubs are black and white. Depending on how they've been stored, you also have to deal with fading or other deterioration. Then there's the question of copyright. Would we even be able to do anything I've suggested without getting permission or approval from the board?

 

I'm game for the stuff I have...and remember, what I have goes back to the very beginnings of IPMS/USA...and I know you are for what you have. What say anyone else reading this?

 

Richard

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David, one reason might be the variation in scanners, scanner programs and scanner skills. Then there's simply the sheer amount of time that'd be required. Plus you'd have to have someone to put all the resulting files on a new section of the IPMS website...more work for the webmaster...and on and on. Another possibility would be, for those of us with at least some of the publications and the ability, to turn the publications we have into pdf ebooks and made available to the membership for a nominal sum...some small amount to recompense us for the time involved. Remember, most of the scans are going to have to be tweaked or otherwise adjusted for optimum viewing...and the majority of our older pubs are black and white. Depending on how they've been stored, you also have to deal with fading or other deterioration. Then there's the question of copyright. Would we even be able to do anything I've suggested without getting permission or approval from the board?

 

I'm game for the stuff I have...and remember, what I have goes back to the very beginnings of IPMS/USA...and I know you are for what you have. What say anyone else reading this?

 

Richard

 

I've scanned and PDF'd a number of older issues. It takes time, but not as much as you'd think. While I've provided individual members with copies of select articles from old magazines, you can't make them available or distribute them widely without IPMS/USA permission. They hold the copyright. I wasn't suggesting anything other than IPMS/USA making them available to current members.

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As John R says above, ALL OF THE ISSUES OF THE QUARTERLY AND UPDATE ARE AVAILABLE.

 

One article at a time. For IPMS members only. The indexes are up on the website,

 

I scanned them and indexed them. You can read about part of that in my article on the 1/144 B-52 in the latest Journal.

 

One big bugaboo right now is Digital Rights Management. If we send out pdf files, we have no control over who copies and passes on our copyrighted material.

And using a service like Zinio is more expensive per issue than printing, unless we double our circulation.

 

Free information is a great idea unless you're trying to pay for the printing and distribution.

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David, Jim and John, keep in mind that all I'm doing is throwing out ideas for preserving all the old material. BTW, since I'm producing my own ebooks that are available on Barnes & Noble, Smashwords and other places, I' m well familiar with DRM. There are two schools of thought in that regard, which is:

 

1. Put the material out there without DRM and don't worry about piracy. The philosophy behind that is that anyone who steals...or copies or passes on...any given material would have never paid for it in the first place. They look on piracy as a form of advertising, exposing the document to people who would otherwise never see it. Since IPMS material would only be of interest to other modelbuilders or potential modelbuilders, this approach might wind up gaining new members.

 

2. There is a way to put ebooks on the Q, Updates and even the current Journal out there that incorporates DRM and it won't cost anything. Amazon.com. You can publish anything thru Amazon as an ebook with DRM enabled. Granted, the mobi format can only be read on Kindle readers...or a free mobi app for your desktop or laptop...but that shouldn't be a handicap considering the market penetration that Kindle has.

 

If the Amazon/DRM approach was used, each issue could be browsed in a manner similar to the original publication instead of having to look up a particular topic or subject in a text index. By the way, this approach also has the potential to

make a little money for the IPMS/USA. Put a nominal price on each one...such as $.99 or $1.99...and make 60% to 80% royalty. Since the IPMS would be the publisher, they would get the money, which could go into the general fund.

 

Just a few random thoughts. Take'em for what they're worth.

 

Richard

Edited by ipmsusa2

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This may deviate a bit but for what it's worth, I would be happy with a digital copy at current membership rates. In my opinion IPMS membership is a steal.

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As John R says above, ALL OF THE ISSUES OF THE QUARTERLY AND UPDATE ARE AVAILABLE.

 

One article at a time. For IPMS members only. The indexes are up on the website,

 

I scanned them and indexed them. You can read about part of that in my article on the 1/144 B-52 in the latest Journal.

 

One big bugaboo right now is Digital Rights Management. If we send out pdf files, we have no control over who copies and passes on our copyrighted material.

And using a service like Zinio is more expensive per issue than printing, unless we double our circulation.

 

Free information is a great idea unless you're trying to pay for the printing and distribution.

 

Jim, first, thanks for having done this. However, I'd like to see more. I'd like to see IPMS USA put all these online and downloadable for any member. As for DRM, frankly I don't see it being worth trying to prevent it being "stolen". It is information we aren't using and I don't think we are going to sell it.

 

Let's give it away and it may end up attracting some folks back to IPMS. In any event, we'd being doing something "For Modelers"

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Jim, I also would like to thank you for creating the Quarterly and Update indices. BTW, while it is true that if you sent out files of the Q and Updates, you would have no control over who passes on our copyrighted material, that also applies to our current publications. I wonder how many members have given copies of the Q or our current Journal to someone who wasn't a member? Or sold old copies at a local meeting kit auction and the buyer wasn't an IPMS member? DRM or not, print publication, CD-ROM, etc., once that product has been sold...or even given away... and transferred to a recipient...our ability to control it ceases. From that point on, the only option is to sue anyone who obtained a copy in a manner you consider inappropriate or illegal. Given the legal costs involved...as well as the time...that option doesn't approach being practical about 98% of the time.

 

At the same time, David, you make excellent points. The only ones interested in the old Quarterly and Update material are either modelers or potential modelers, whether IPMS members or not. Besides, the bottom line is that the IPMS motto is "By Modelers, For Modelers". Since one of our goals is to grow the IPMS/USA as well as to encourage more people to become modelers, the more widely our material from the Q, Updates and Journal can be disseminated...within reason, the better off we're going to be as an organization.

 

One possibility might be to emulate FineScale Modeler. They're fairly recently put 25 years of FineScale on a DVD and sold it for $100...recently temporarily discounted to $69.95. We're talking each magazine in its entirety, cover to cover. Articles, ads, editorials, everything. If we did the same thing, you'd be controlling the material and making money at the same time. Price might be lower...say $49.95...but there should certainly be a market for it.

 

One final note. Copyright laws today state that copyright occurs at the moment of creation...and no copyright notice is required. Even this email I'm typing is being copyrighted as I type. The same thing happens when you build a model, take a photograph, paint a figure, etc, ad nauseum. Taken to the extreme, we all violate copyright law by copying or repeating anything anyone says or does without their explicit permission. Silly? Absolutely. But that's how crazy things have gotten.

 

Respectfully,

Richard

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This apparently cannot be stated often enough -- as a non-profit we are severely limited in what we can earn from outside the society (non-members) without loosing that non-profit status - and we are audited annually by the IRS.

 

While we appreciate the suggestions, this is not something we take lightly as we have to deal with it a number of times each year.

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