They tell us that the Internet means the death of print, that publications on paper will be rapidly fading away.
There’s no doubt that newspapers nationwide are in trouble, with diminishing advertising and readership. Hundreds of good newspaper reporters have lost their jobs in recent years.
The future of old fashioned books is also in question, what with the growing popularity of electronic books such as Kindle. I have hope, however, that enough people like me who love the touch and feel of real books, will continue to buy them into the foreseeable future.
But there’s one aspect of the print industry that is just flourishing like crazy, and that’s magazines. I remember when magazine racks in book stores used to be about six or eight feet long, maybe. Now, go in a Barnes & Noble or Books a Million and you see magazine racks that stretch for many yards, from one wall to another.
No matter what your interest, you can find a magazine that features it.
Interested in Scotland, France or England? There are magazines for that. How about birds in your backyard? Why, sure, you can read about that.
Interested in military history? While there are a couple of general magazines that include “military history” in their titles, there are also specialist magazines on ancient warfare, medieval warfare, the American Civil War (a whole bunch of them), World War II, Vietnam, etc.
I couldn’t count the number of auto magazines available. You can read about sports cars, custom cars, hot rods, American cars and foreign cars. There’s even magazines for specific makes, such as Chevrolet or Chrysler and Dodge products. There are also several magazines that are in effect, giant classified ad publications. Looking for a 1937 Dodge four-door sedan? You can almost certainly find one for sale.
There are magazines on travel, magazines on staying home and fixing up your house, fashion magazines, magazines about the American West, magazines on the latest electronic gadgets, on sewing and embroidery, on guns (specializing in pistols or rifles), on hunting and fishing and on fitness and health. Like I said, if you’re interested in it, you can read about it.
I think this is all great. I’m a pretty involved magazine reader myself. I subscribe to four or five magazines on stamp collecting alone, as well as classic car magazines, history magazines (including two published in Britain), baseball magazines and even two British magazines on historic aircraft. The overseas subscription rates on the Brit magazines are a little pricey, but they are very well done.
I could go on and on, but you get my point that, Internet or no, magazines seem to be here to stay. Besides, it’s time for me to check the mailbox and see if my newest copy of Military History has arrived.