Managing the Evolution
It was the mid '90s. Companies were jumping onto the Internet like kids on a trampoline. My job as an editor was changing rapidly.
I remember when the Web's immediacy hit me. I was working for a small magazine publisher, sitting at my desk, thinking of writing an article about the U.S. Army Combat Artists, who were shipped off with U.S. Military units during the Vietnam War to create sketches and paintings to document the war. I was dreading how time-consuming it would be to track these artists down, but I plugged a few keywords into a search engine, and in minutes, I was on the phone with a Combat Artist in Texas. Those whose publishing careers started after that time period would not appreciate this fully. But those of us exposed to pre-Internet research sure do.
The Web had won me over. I knew the magazine had to be online. … Suddenly, I was no longer a print editor; my publishers no longer print publishers. It was a whole new world of writers' agreements for online publishing, online ordering, e-newsletters, online forums and advertising.
"Print-only" publishing has been diminishing in the 10 years since. Now there's print, digital editions, Webcasts, podcasts, RSS and more. Rand McNally is publishing real-time traffic updates via mobile phones; ESPN offers mobile content galore—from college sports to X-games to fantasy sports, and ESPN Deportes, for Spanish-language sports updates; among other new endeavors. Like the Web, these media present unbelievable opportunity. But we all need a ton of information, fast.
Big Changes in Store for PrintMedia
For almost 20 years, PrintMedia has covered just that—print media. But as publishing companies have been tasked with producing e-newsletters, digital editions, etc., and making them profitable, PrintMedia's name no longer seemed to fit its readers quite so well.