It’s a slow saturday in BMX Blogging. My google reader was left with few options, and nothing that struck me as important. There is snow on the ground, and it’s cold. The very small local indoor charges $13 to ride a park on weekends, and I’m cheap. I decided it has been a while since I’ve done a “blog” post. I’m sure if you found my site, you were on the internet enough this week to catch the huge flair up about “Is print dying?” debate…
Given this post on Streetphire was asking the question “Do magazines still count?”. It then sparked a bigger debate on The Come Up. The question was asked to simply if you subscribe or purchase a magazine, which one. However, it came off as “Who really buys a magazine anymore” to some. Streetphire was quick to clear up the misconception right here though. It still caught the attention of Robin over at Ride UK who voiced his opinion on the subject also.
I guess I just figured it is one of those arguments that goes in a circle with no real winner. I mean there are so many outside factors we can’t even control about this. The way some were taking it, is “Hey, you are either a web person or a print person, there is no both”. This poll was a web poll, so it only takes into consideration the peoples opinion who happened to be on their computer when the poll was live. That leaves everyone who doesn’t visit Streetphire, The Come Up, or Ride UK to have the chance to voice their vote. Then you gotta think about how many people took the poll as “Is print valuable, or dying”, then the people who took it as “I read the magazines, but I borrow them from friends, so I gotta vote no”, etc. etc. etc. This is like those shitty questionnaires high schools make you fill out so they can figure out why they are failing at reaching kids. I took statistics in college, and basically I’ve come to the conclusion that who really gives a shit what people vote? You will never get 100% truthful or correct answers, you will never get an entire populations vote, and even if you did get the entire population there will be some jackass trying to screw it up. It’s like Google’s help pages asking if you found this information helpful. I’ve voted no for the simple fact that it was confusing the way Google likes to do things over the way I think it could be done.
This statement I’m about to say has been said many, many times before. This arguement is one of the undertones of what is fairly clear and “wrong” about BMX now days. Everyone feels entitled to an opinion, and that if you don’t agree, they will fire up an army of people who agree to lay down some words against the other group who is on the other side of the fence. I’m not saying your opinion doesn’t matter, nor am I saying my opinion is any better than yours. I know my opinion probably weighs less than anonymous’ to be honest. I’m just saying people take their perspective on things as the only right thing. This happens in everything, hell… look at the U.S government system. It’s destroyed because there are two sides and there is no “well, let’s just try and work out something that works for both sides” because then somebody will feel like they weren’t 100% completely right or that defies the point of having Republican and Democratic sides.
So here is my thought on this. It has NOTHING to do with me working at Dig either.
I’ve been cruising the internet since the days of AOL 6.0, and actually a bit before that. I remember playing frisbee with an AOL disc actually. Who remembers when they would give you like 100 at a time.
I have been interested in the internet since the day I understood the possibilities. Hell, who doesn’t remember going into a chat room at 13 convincing some girl you are 18 and that they should send you a picture of her boobs? I did. I’ll admit it. I had mad game when I was 13. I don’t know where it went though.
I spent a lot of my years growing up playing around with websites, uploading videos I made to websites before Youtube, Vimeo, and MPORA. It interested the hell out of me. I loved the possibilities, and everyday it just gets easier for everyone to do it. Internet has truly taken over the world. It’s the only damn thing people can all relate to now days! You are on a road trip in the middle of no where in Minnesota… but you are on you iPhone watching a video of some kid over in Europe. I watched it happen this summer. It’s awesome. I won’t lie.
However, I don’t see how this will kill print. I do understand a large number of people prefer web content over a magazine due to how fast news travels. I remember when monthly news was actually current. Now I read the monthly news column in Ride U.S and say “Oh yeah, I remember posting a video about this 6 weeks ago”. That’s honestly the only thing that isn’t current when it comes to print. That, and it isn’t an HD video. However, most magazines now days feature content that is higher end, that if it was on the web would disappear as soon as The Come Up gets 7 new videos to post above it. That’s why you don’t see pictures featured on the web all too often unless it’s an ad for a company.
Photos are something different from videos. They generally always require words to explain why this picture means something, or what was going on during the picture. For example, Big Daddy wouldn’t be very funny if it was just a picture of his on a bus pointing at somebody. However, in the Etnies Vs. Kink Road Fools feature in the latest Dig, you get over a page worth of funny quotes from him. That’s what makes the photo so good.
I know you are saying “well web has text, and can do that all”. True… but guess how many times my google reader comes up with a site with a new post, that is photos? Pretty much everyday, but it’s usually something I’ll by pass to the next site with an update. Why? because I really don’t feel like the picture will interest very many people on the internet.
However, when you see a magazine what do you expect to see? That’s right. Good photos, with a story behind it. You read it to take a break from your computer, or while taking that huge dump while screaming for your mom to bring the plunger up. When you are sitting on a plane flying off to a new place to ride. Shit, my power went out yesterday due to a snow storm. My laptop and iTouch had no use once that happened because my internet was down. Last time I checked schools (except for college) have a shit fit if you pull a phone out to check your email or something right? I recall plenty of BMX sites being banned on those school computers too.
Alright, so you are probably sick of reading. All I’m saying is that people are all different, and that to you print might be dead. You don’t care to read it. That’s fine. However, there is probably another person itching to check their mail box for the newest issue. I know I spend FAR too much time on my computer and go through more BMX content in a day then most people, but I still find it comforting to chill in the recliner to read a magazine. I work in both sides of the spectrum and I guess I just think people need to be more open minded that shit doesn’t have to revolve around their opinion only. Yes, you are entitled to do whatever you want. I just don’t think you are entitled to decide what other people need to think.
Go check out a video now, or go dig through your old stacks of magazines. I don’t care what you do. I’m just saying stop fighting over this shit because we both know in 5 years it will still be the same damn fight. Magazines will die because of their lack of good, interesting content, and a publisher that doesn’t want to put money into a small niche sport. Websites will fail because the people involved will produce shitty content, or no content. Magazines will succeed because they produce great stories and good photos. Websites will succeed because they are producing interesting shit people care to read or watch.
I feel like people need to get over it, and stop trying to fight which side they are on. It’s BMX, and you should be supportive of any movement whether it is print or internet to promote the sport. That is what I mean by “Get over it. It’s just BMX”. Sorry for those who take my words far beyond what they are.
Edit: Due to the first comment, I feel I need to clarify since apparently people think they can make a judgement by reading “Get over it. It’s just BMX.”, (which I have edited) and know where I’m coming from. It’s long because I’m defending both sides of the argument. I honestly feel that yeah, internet is great and will continue to grow, but I don’t believe magazines will fail because of that. Yeah, magazines will have to change up their style and what kind of product they produce… but they will fail for the content they produce, not because the internet.