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Windsurfing Magazine -- RIP
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derekd



Joined: 12 Mar 1994
Posts: 72

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:16 pm    Post subject: transworld surf Reply with quote

transworld surf, the print is way too small, need a magnifying glass to read it. What's with that?
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 19932

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:19 pm    Post subject: Re: transworld surf Reply with quote

derekd wrote:
transworld surf, the print is way too small, need a magnifying glass to read it. What's with that?

It's written and printed for much younger eyes.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 19932

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jsampiero wrote:
WINDSURFING magazine did nothing of the sort.

There was as much, if not more, moderate and light-wind coverage it's early and I must be cranky!

Easily understood. Besides, the only issues I've saved from 1998 to 2011 have been the high-wind board test issues. Why? Because I agree with
what boracayboardhead wrote:
“Was a subscriber for years. No so much for the euipment tests as I can only afford used stuff"
but for a different reason: I PREFER the older stuff, and where else can I start picking and choosing it (and choosing which new stuff merits reality checks) than in those saved high-wind board tests?

kellygeygan wrote:
Must be windy where you live....doubt you would be sailing much where 90% of the population exists.

Suggestion: move. Thousands of us have, just for that reason, with zero regrets. Tens of millions of people live near wind and water; come join us and burn them eleven-meter drive-in movie screens forever! Wink

Mike \m/
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cbknap



Joined: 03 Jun 1997
Posts: 355

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How many subscribers did Windsurfing Mag have when it closed at the end of 2011? How does that compare to 2005? 2000? 1995? 1990?

I'd be interested to know.

Unfortunately it is an increasingly niche sport. Some people came by while I was rigging yesterday and one said "I've got to try that windboarding..."

Many of those who did found it too damn hard.......

--chris
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chakochako



Joined: 11 May 1998
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, at least we get a surfing magazine, not a kitesurfing magazine. LOL. I paid up to January 2014, so I will learn a lot about surfing in the next two years.
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kellygeygan



Joined: 10 Apr 2000
Posts: 65

PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

REALITY AND PERCEPTION

I think the point of the initial post was that as economic times change businesses must adapt to survive.

Ayn Rand "you can ignore reality but you can not ignore the consequences of ignoring reality"

Windsurfing magazine was a great example of this.The opportunity to create a solid financial foundation through the promotion of EXISTING,accessible and functional{to all,regardless of location} windsurfing technology was largely ignored.

The choices were...

Concentrate on affordable equipment,that works efficiently in prevailing conditions Nationwide and secure a large following of loyal subscribers.This approach is affordable initially and long term because there is no need to travel...this is not glamorous or extreme..but it is reality to 90% of us 90% of the time.

or

Concentrate on a base market established during times of apparent wealth , dont adjust to changes in this base market and lose most of your subscribers,
who have lost most of their home equity{thru deflation of property values}
and savings{thru the subsequent inflation of consumer goods}
Since subscribers are the reason advertisers spend money you have now lost BOTH sources of revenue.

Sounds like chapter 11 bankruptcy


The remaining windsurf magazines will likely pick up the now available subscribers and maybe even learn from the mistakes of Windsurfing Magazine...if this happens the public will have access to a better product than was available in the past.That is freemarket economics 101 and why a business failure can become a positive to the consumer.

One thing we should all recognize...we are all waterpeople...that includes longboards to kites.
A divisive approach weakens ALL of us.We win or lose together.

I enjoy the exchanges so please feel free to disagree and correct me.
jsampiero wrote:
KellyGeygan:

WINDSURFING magazine did nothing of the sort.

There was as much, if not more, moderate and light-wind coverage than any other windsurfing magazine in the entire damn world. The editor (me!) learned to sail on Formula gear, was from the land of light wind (Florida!) and fully appreciated the need for real world windsurfing. That's why I tested 30 boards of 100 liters and above last year in Hatteras rather than in Maui.

Your comment about "shopping longboards before they are cool again" shows how ludicrously out of touch you are with what's going on in the sport of windsurfing. WINDSURFING magazine has been touting longboards since the release of the Kona, and has *guaranteed* run more SUP sailing coverage than other wind rags (I did TWO SUP board tests!) and had lots of hot shots.

That whole "focus on the high wind thing" happened in the mid-90's, not the new millenium. Maybe that was when you stopped reading?

If you're going to talk trash about something someone who genuinely cared about the sport worked hard on, please at least be familiar with the product you're trashing.

To everyone else: Sorry, it's early and I must be cranky!
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jsampiero



Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 677

PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Cognitive dissonance"?

Now it doesn't sound like talking trash, it sounds like an insult.

Here's where I see cognitive dissonance:

You said, in summary:

WINDSURFING magazine failed as a business because it ignored the light-air, real-world conditions and applications, choosing to focus on the sex appeal of high-wind excitement."

I responded:

Indeed, that is a mistake WINDSURFING, the magazine, and windsurfing the industry had made in the past, but those who have been reading the magazine with any regularity during my tenure, as well as the tenure of Eddy P before me, will have noticed a concerted effort to be grass-roots and real-world connected.


You replied, in summary: The same argument as the first time, with an Ayn Rand quote thrown in for good measure.


It appears the main basis of your argument is that we didn't test something important to you: Formula boards.

While Formula boards may offer the best light-air performance, the 1) Technical skill used to ride them 2)necessity for big sails 3) higher cost compared to free-ride gear meant they were a small and shrinking portion of boards sold each year. Formula boards, although light-wind performers with the ability to offer thrills in any area of the USA, not exactly "approachable."

If I have a limited amount of pages per issue and per year, I'm going to spend them on the product that has the widest appeal: free-ride and free-race boards between 100-150 liters.

For approachable, I considered SUP sailing far more approachable than Formula. I think a lot of people would agree with me. As mentioned in my first reply, this got a lot of play in WINDSURFING.

Your theory as to "how we could have been successful":

kellygeygan wrote:
Concentrate on affordable equipment,that works efficiently in prevailing conditions Nationwide and secure a large following of loyal subscribers.This approach is affordable initially and long term because there is no need to travel...this is not glamorous or extreme..but it is reality to 90% of us 90% of the time.


Let me put it to you bluntly: We tried that.

However, the logic relies on a false premise: that there is a large following of potentially loyal subscribers to be gained. I know what our subscription numbers were, and while they had diminished, it was less so than one might think. WINDSURFING maintained one of the highest renewal rates in the company. (CBknap, I don't have those exact numbers that you asked for. I can tell you our circulation has decreased over that time.)

That said, it needs to be acknowledged: There's not a ton of windsurfers out there, and the people that DO windsurf aren't spending money on new gear every year.

Sailing 42 miles may put you in touch with yourself, but by no means puts you in touch with everything that is going on in the windsurfing industry. Here's three big reasons why WINDSURFING is out of business:

The costs of being in the print industry have increased, while revenues have decreased. This is across the board and not particular to WINDSURFING. There was also less than stellar performance in converting print revenue to online revenue - and brands began spending more of their marketing budgets on being "their own agency". (See: Red Bull).

Less windsurfing gear has been sold in the last two years than any year in my lifetime.

The parent company elected not to give the brand adequate support to expand their business model to produce forms of revenue beyond customer subscriptions and advertising. In all honesty, this may have been the smartest business decision.

[/b]

_________________
__________________________________________
FORMERLY of www.windsurfingmag.com Wink

My personal website: www.youneedjosh.com
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jsampiero



Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 677

PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quickly - I appreciate the many highly complimentary and encouraging things folks here on the forum have had to say about the magazine and job I did as Editor. This community has always proven to be a worthwhile sounding board, and the good stuff has always outweighed the bad! I know I made plenty of mistakes while at the helm, and to be honest, it's easy to get a feeling of being "the captain that sunk the ship", (despite the fact that there were a number of detrimental factors that contributed to the demise of the magazine) so conversations like the one we've been having seem to get me a little fired up.
_________________
__________________________________________
FORMERLY of www.windsurfingmag.com Wink

My personal website: www.youneedjosh.com
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cbknap



Joined: 03 Jun 1997
Posts: 355

PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 4:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jsampiero wrote:

cbknap, I don't have those exact numbers that you asked for. I can tell you our circulation has decreased over that time.
[/b]


Josh: I would love to see an estimate of those numbers over the last 20 years. The tale of your ex-mag is in those numbers.... and that's nothing an editor can fix.

I would have argued that there was still enough circulation to support a magazine....but then again I'm not a publisher.

Without question the big surf brands, on the profits of their clothing lines alone, can afford to throw huge dollars at advertising that, just to name a few WS brands at random, Naish, Ezzy and Maui Sails can not. No WS mag is going to make as much money as a surf mag.

I do not agree with the increasingly troll-like poster that WS magazine was making "mistakes." Writing (more) stories about lake sailing on used gear would not have saved WS magazine. WS pretty much covered all the bases but the big ad dollars just simply weren't there...



--chris


PS to Josh: Don't take the bait. When people start out writing in all caps you can assume that they are not interested in a rational discussion..
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 2361
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:00 pm    Post subject: Josh Rocks! Reply with quote

You know, one thing that kills me about the culture in The States, is that
someone always has to be "at fault". Especially when the results impact
you personally. There's no fault here. Is it Windsurfing mags fault, that
the requirements for this sport (wind and water) don't happen in most
places where there are consumers? Is it Windsurfing magazines fault that
print formats have been replaced by digital formats? Is it Windsurfing mags fault that
this sport requires commitment?

This sport is beautiful and exciting, and when a non-windsurfer sees a
photograph of someone in blue warm water flying through the air, or
bottom turning a clean wave, they see the beauty and they want that.
But, if they don't want it bad enough to spend some time in cold muddy
water, you know they won't last in the sport. In fact, if they don't love
the cold muddy water experience they probably won't last. I'll bet if you
did a genetic test on those still windsurfing you find most of them have
a thrill seeker gene.

In my opinion, that makes the sport small, and the business model for it
small (not withstanding the initial growth explosion of any new sport).
Small enough that it may not support more than 1 magazine (if it even
supports 1). I'd love to spend my time in a flying squirrel suit rocketing
down cliffs, and when I watch the videos, I know I wanna do that, but
if there is a Flying Squirrel Suit magazine, there won't be for long. It's
just a small market.

I've had the pleasure of meeting Josh, and frankly, the reason the mag
lasted the last few years is BECAUSE of Josh. you all should be
thanking him for keeping it fresh, concentrated on the current sport,
and joyful. Plus, just take a look at his responses here. The guy brings
stoke, and humor, and all of that while being extremely civil in the face
of adversity. That's a nearly impossible combination to find (just think
of how a subject like this would degenerate if some of the posters here
were the editor).

.02

-Craig

p.s Josh, that video of things people say at interviews cracks me up!
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