[FoRK] archive delivery for magazine
<kelley at inkworkswell.com> on
Thu Feb 1 05:00:48 PST 2007
I have a friend who's on the editorial board for a print magazine that's
been publishing monthly for 50 years. They're raising the price of a
subscription and want to provide access to their digital archives as part
of the price hike. They scanned and pdf'd the content and they'd like me to
create the information design to make it easy for newbz to navigate the
archives. no problem.
However, what's bugging me is the solution they're using to deliver the
The only pub I'm familiar with and have used that does this is Science
Magazine. Buy a sub, get access to their archives. IIRC, I got a special
number, either printed on the print mag's address label or e-mailed to me.
Logged in, registered for archive access, voila. They also made it
difficult for the ordinary user to save the content in the archives, so
they couldn't easily send all their friends a copy of the archived article.
Right now, they're considering using an add-on for Miva Merchant: Softgoods
produced by Viking Coders. It delivers digital content as part of the
My first instinct is to say, "Ugh. Not for people who are not used to using
the Web. They'll see shopping cart environment and immediately assume
they're going to get charged."
Next was to say, "Ugh. They'll buy the sub, get the info to login for their
archive access, but they won't use it right away. Then they'll forget to
login information and will be pissed that they can't login or feel that it
was a deliberate way to scam them or send email/phone calls to complain and
get new login information."
Next, "Ugh. If I want archive access, I want to know that I can log in any
time and read what I want to read. Will the add-on for Miva merchant do
that for me?"
Next, "Ugh, are we talking download one PDF's magazine at a time? Or are
they talking download the entire 50 year x 11 mags each year archive, right
on to each and every subscribers hard drive?"
I could go on with the UGHs.
Is anyone familiar with off-the-shelf (or close to off-the-shelf)
alternatives that aren't terribly spendy? They really can't justify
spending a ton since the point was to add a bell to justify the increased
subscription price hike.
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