#902 Debate time – online vs print

Image /Vogue Hommes Japan

The adults in my life are forever bemoaning the demise of the printed arts. ‘Internet just isn’t the same,’ they say, ‘it hurts our eyes and we like something tangible that can be held in our hands. Plus, you can’t take a computer to the beach!’ I’ve grown so used to reading things on the computer that books have become frustrating – no vertical scroll (kidding) – but when it comes to fashion, as much as I love blogs, there’s nothing quite like a magazine or a coffee table book – computer screens don’t do justice to beautiful photography or an amazing interview/profile. I’m far more interested in reading news and reviews online for both the immediacy and quality of writing available (Suzy Menkes, Tim Blanks etc), and it seems like even newspapers are a day behind now that the world has shifted online. But magazines have longevity that newspapers and blogs don’t have – I can write something amazing on Isaac Likes and it’ll be gone from the main page within a couple of days. I once asked Zambesi’s Neville Findlay why he doesn’t advertise online more often and his response was that he likes the idea that he can pick up a magazine in five years time and still see his advert in there.

So my questions to you are:

Do you prefer reading about fashion online or in magazines/newspapers?

Do you like being able to see editorials quickly online or do you prefer to wait and see them in the magazine on the pages they were designed for?

Which are the best magazines?

The best blogs?

Favourite fashion writers?

How do you respond to advertising in magazines?

Is there a difference between reading a great article online or in a magazine?

Do you mind paying for magazines when you can get most of the content for free online?

Comment below.


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  1. Anonymous says

    i’m with the oldies – nothing beats physically holding and reading a book and magazine, the more tattered the better too.

    i don’t mind forking out money for mags either, and i do ($30 for lula now, cripes!), i’ll get self service once in a blue moon, it costs about $50 but it’s more a coffee table book really, and arguably the best ‘mag’ out there. russh and iD are my regulars.

    the magazine forum on TFS is good for a quick fix of eds, especially for mags i’m not gonna buy, so i don’t mind reading online for updates etc.

  2. Anonymous says

    Such a worthwhile debate to bring up.
    In my opinion, there’s certainly room for both.

    Not only are blogs beneficial for immediacy of news, but it also offers a dialogue with your readers that’s easy to facilitate. There are some fantastic fashion writers out there, such as Patty Huntington who brings a little depth to (lets face it) a shallow industry and it’s always a forum in which the audience can and will have their say. In terms of online magazines within New Zealand, 1am are better online, and, if they continue with their quick turnaround, will thrive in a society that craves disposability.
    However, nothing will compare to the real thing. It’s tangible, mobile and elite – there’s something special about composing a small compendium of pieces that have to qualify before an editor to be put into print. This is why many of us keep copies of magazines in our homes as a reference to revisit years later as inspiration and nostalgia.
    There is a similar debate going on within the writing communities overseas – with many authors unable to decide whether a book should be published online or not. Concerns range from censorship to plagiarism to the un-quality of material the younger generations will be learning from.
    At the end of the day, it’s vital to keep hardcopy alive. If cyberspace were to crash, the past would no longer exist and….
    He who controls the present controls the past. He who controls the past controls the future!

    Good work Isaac!

  3. k says

    Isaac. There is nothing better than the smell of stuff off the press. Or the feel of some kind of offset uncoated stock. There is a good feeling when you’re holding something that looks good and has ‘weight’ to it. But it’s true, printing takes time. If you want accessibility and ‘instant-ability’, the internet is the way to go. It’s much less ‘special’ to me though.

  4. says

    i like the fact that a magazine is a finite ‘snapshot’ in time – it can’t be added to (or taken away from, once you commit it to print, that’s it). it is also often better laid-out, thought-out and tells more of a story than an evolving website/blog. i also like the tangible nature of a magazine or book. on the other hand yes, the immediacy and interactive nature of blogs are great. but personally i prefer the physical product to a computer screen any day. great topic isaac!!

  5. says

    I tend to enjoy the print magazines that are not printed month to month like 10 Men and Indie. It’s nice to step away from the computer and get an uncluttered snapshot of a segment of the season. The same cannot be said for monthly issues, which are usually full of saturated articles of nonsense that does not pertain to the magazine’s nature. And do not get me started on unworthy cover subjects, just to make a buck.

  6. k says

    Something I forgot to say – the internet DOES hurt your eyes! Being at a computer/internet/screen based job all day (9 hours) really screws with your body. Shoulders, eyes, back, wrists, grim.

  7. old girl says

    I have keeped all my March and September Vogues from u.s.a. and u.k for the last 10 years, all so vanity Fairs for over 20years,I have young friend who is well know designer who wants me to leave them to her in my will,I am old but not that old yet. I have a rule at the store when the mags arrive from the fashion bookery I get to open them and look first, it is the smell the feel. I do enjoy online fashion and blogs but love my mags more

  8. old girl says

    I forgot to say I do watch a lot of fashion t.v. Then go to style.com if I want a better look at a collection. Nz mags I enjoy are remix and black

  9. says

    I still like the smell and feel of a magazine. Online is great though for quick updates of catwalk collections. Blogs are amazing!
    Best magazines- for fshion you still can’t go past the bible- British Vogue, Australian at a stretch (American Vogue is to flashy).
    I dont mind paying for a magazine if its got a few good articles or spreads I want to read. You can borrow most mags now at libraries for free or a small amount. There’s still something special about buying a magazine and having a read at home over afternoon tea…

  10. Leonie says

    I like browsing on the net and enjoy being able to see a great variety of fashion, interviews with designers, models, opinion pieces, etc. If I see something I’m particularly interested in, I’ll make a point of buying it and while I’m there I’ll check what else is available. It is nice to have big glossies. But it’s also nice to have the convenience of being on line and using the technology as the tool it’s meant to be. It’s financially and locality friendly!

  11. says

    Reading wise, I love the immediacy of online (up to the minute, you can search for anything you want etc) however i love to plough through a good long article in my hands.

    I’m a big fan of finding editorials online – especially for magazines that are hard to get, expensive, or only have some good content. However for the publications I really love (Russh, Lula etc) i will literally cover my eyes if I happen to see any images from the latest issue – and when I read them I dont allow myself to peek ahead (magazine nerd much!?)

    Magazines I love: Russh, Lula, French Vogue, No, iD, Pop, Dazed and confused, Jalouse.

    Blogs I check daily (they vary from news to streetstyle etc): Fashionista, The Cut, Fashion Toast, Frockwriter, Turned Out, Garance Dore etc. the Fashion Spot forums are also addictive.

    I’m happy to pay for magazines if they are worth it – writing, editorials etc etc.

    I dont think they will ever be replaced; personally there is nothing like the precious, tactile nature of an amazing magazine – ideally they are a piece of perfection. Definitely capturing a moment in time a s someone said earlier.

  12. jess says

    online because i’m a broke ass, but nothing compares to a hardcopy..

    i get self service, vogue italia.. and if i find editorials online i fall in love with i have to go buy the magazine. (purple magazine, lots of obscure european ones that are genius)

    online allows accses to and a lot of exposure to artists, people with talent.. anyone has a chance but yeah, nothing like a ridiculously heavy magazine.

  13. oldgirl says

    lookbooks are good too. I just pop in to Plume to look at something I ahd seen in the lookbook, i like to study alook and my eyes get sore if on line to long.

  14. says

    Influence can be defined as the power exerted over the minds and behavior of others. A power that can affect, persuade and cause changes to someone or something. In order to influence people, you first need to discover what is already influencing them. What makes them tick? What do they care about? We need some leverage to work with when we’re trying to change how people think and behave.


  15. says

    Ways to Influence People Online and Make Them Take Action
    Influence can be defined as the power exerted over the minds and behavior of others. A power that can affect, persuade and cause changes to someone or something. In order to influence people, you first need to discover what is already influencing them. What makes them tick? What do they care about? We need some leverage to work with when we’re trying to change how people think and behave.


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