Why I'm not buying Amateur Photographer today...

drd1135

Zen Snapshooter
Jul 13, 2011
124
Lexington, Virginia
Steve
I don't subscribe to many magazines anymore. But I do subscribe to two auto and two motorycle magazines. What keeps me coming back when I can get all of the latest news and reviews for free online? High quality writing. For the most part, just ain't the same on the Web. Certainly in the car and bike field. As long as guys like Jamie Kitman, Ezra Dyer, John Phillips and (the semi-retired) Peter Egan keep writing, I'll keep buying. But I also second Luke's remarks about needing to do a good amount of my reading away from a screen.
I wonder which magazine that is? :) I also get a few motorcycle magazines and I like the stories and most of the travelogues. Like you say, really good writing makes a magazine worth while.
 

Biro

Super Moderator
Aug 7, 2011
124
Jersey Shore
Steve
I wonder which magazine that is? :) I also get a few motorcycle magazines and I like the stories and most of the travelogues. Like you say, really good writing makes a magazine worth while.
For those who don't know, Jamie Kitman is with Automobile magazine. Ezra Dyer was, too, but he just left and I'll have to see where he ends up. John Phillips is with Car and Driver and Peter Egan is with Road & Track and Cycle World. All write both monthly columns as well as full pieces. Except Peter Egan, who just gave up his monthly column after 30-plus years. He still does features. I'll add technical writer Kevin Cameron to the list (monthly columns with both Cycle World and Car and Driver). The work from all of these guys qualifies as literature.
 

Lightmancer

Super Moderator
Aug 13, 2011
164
Sunny Frimley
Bill Palmer
This thread has taken an interesting turn, as is often the way. I am definitely in the camp of wanting magazines to continue as a medium - I subscribe to two: Black + White Photography and The Chap. I also buy the British Journal of Photography, and, occasionally, Photography Monthly. In other areas of interest, I sometimes pick up Land Rover Owner. They are all characterised by being well produced and written, with informative and often in-depth articles offering insight balanced with a personal view. None of them are trying to be "first with the news".

Where AP lost it for me was in their marginalisation of experienced columnists such as Roger Hicks. Relegated to the back page for some time, he is now reduced to critiquing well-known photos. Their last re-vamp a few weeks ago took them further into the "chat" style magazine that appears to be written by and for goldfish with the attention span of a gnat with a tv remote. They have also "forgotten" more than they have ever contained, by employing what appear to be spotty schoolboys as writers. Emphasis is now placed upon use of social (which means Flickr - nothing else exists in AP-world) and the creative uses of portable telephones and how good they are now. Things like viewfinders are treated as hangovers of the past, and commented upon negatively if included in a body by a manufacturer. All product tests score between 85 and 87% so as not to upset the advertisers.

I know I sound like a grumpy old luddite, but compare and contrast with Black + White; well-written, sympathetically edited, informative, inspirational and beautifully produced, vs something that makes Hello! look like incisive, in-depth journalism.
 

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Jan 3, 2012
124
Troy, NY
For those who don't know, Jamie Kitman is with Automobile magazine. Ezra Dyer was, too, but he just left and I'll have to see where he ends up. John Phillips is with Car and Driver and Peter Egan is with Road & Track and Cycle World. All write both monthly columns as well as full pieces. Except Peter Egan, who just gave up his monthly column after 30-plus years. He still does features. I'll add technical writer Kevin Cameron to the list (monthly columns with both Cycle World and Car and Driver). The work from all of these guys qualifies as literature.
Back in the day, my hero was Brock Yates of Canonball Baker fame.

Cheers, Jock
 

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Jan 3, 2012
124
Troy, NY
I know I sound like a grumpy old luddite, but compare and contrast with Black + White; well-written, sympathetically edited, informative, inspirational and beautifully produced, vs something that makes Hello! look like incisive, in-depth journalism.
Bill,

I didn't know if you are aware of this, but in order to be a fully accredited luddite, you have to be both grumpy and old.

Cheers, Jock
 

pdk42

Regular
Apr 4, 2014
33
I totally agree with the tone of most posts here. I bought my first copy of AP in 20 years a few months ago when passing through an airport and was shocked at how awful it was. There were a couple of very basic "what to do with your new DSLR" articles; a few equipment reviews that had maybe 10% of the content and insight you'd find on DPReview; but worst of all was an article on mirrorless which was factually wrong, shallow and misleading. I fear AP doesn't have much of a future on its current form.
 

El Guapo

Regular
Feb 3, 2014
43
Before the Internets, camera magazines were THE source of camera/photo information, equipment sources and trends. I used to buy 2-3 a week. I thank the publishers, writers and all involved for that effort during those years. Time has moved on and I buy maybe one a year.

In recent years though I've drifted from physical Camera magazines to online Photography magazines, ones that have little or no camera or equipment reviews.
I get all the equipment reviews I can handle online in forums like this one!

While we are unashamedly promoting such Photography sites, I like these two, and I'll add the usual disclaimer that I have nothing to do with them except a reader AND listener to their podcasts..

http://www.theinspiredeye.net/

http://www.lenswork.com/

While I go off-topic about podcasts, I have very much been enjoying the banter of these two guys - http://5by5.tv/otp Check them out.
 

theoldsmithy

Hall of Famer
Jan 7, 2013
124
Cheshire, England
Martin Connolly
I've got a subscription to AP. It works out at about £1.30 per week, which I don't consider too bad. Sure, it has its bad points such as its obsession with Photoshop and ignorance of just about any other processing tool (some coverage of Lightroom but usually only as a way to get into Photoshop!), and pretty slavish following of the latest new tweak to DSLRs, but it still manages some readable articles (Bob Newman notwithstanding) and has general industry news which I find quite interesting. At less than the price of my daily paper I think it's worth sticking with.
 

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