Price increase (moved from Forum 1)

1 reply [Last post]
Joined: Mar 7 1999

Forum 1 - which was a test forum used when this messageboard first opened - is now closed.

Here is one of three threads that I have copied over from Forum 1 - for the record, as much as anything.

Bob C
Forum 1
Price increase

Author Topic: Price increase
Member posted 30 April 1999 13:34
Sorry Bob but I cannot see any justification in a near 25% price increase for the magazine, considering the amount of padding ( On the Net, etc) in this months issue. Leandro Blanco (who came to my notice when I had a video transmitted on Meridans Freescreen and he was also a contributor) makes very good videos, but I have already read about him in your sister magazine. As for Radio Premiere I have no interest what so ever and I believe most of your readers do not either. Is there not a clue in the title "Computer Video"? Stick to the technicalities of computers working with videos as this is the "niche market" you use to justify the price increase and leave other magazines to cover those subjects that are at best on the fringes of Computer Video!

regards Paul

PS Where are the details about those jobs?

Administrator posted 01 May 1999 03:50
Last thing first - the job is in the Computer Video Magazine forum and was posted on 10-4-99.
You need to dive over there and click on the down arrow next to the "Show topics from x days" window and select, say, "Show topics from 20 days".

After a short delay, the relevant message (and other older ones) will spring on screen.

Now to your comments about the price increase and the mag's contents.

On price, there is a justification - that the mag, which is a niche publication, with a relatively small circulation, cannot continue being sold at the existing price AND deliver the editorial quality that you and other readers rightly expect.

I am less happy about the overall quality of CV than anyone else in the world yet without extra resources, there is little I can do about it - and the resources cost money.

I work five days a week in the office and most weekends at home. Usually, I also work between three and five hours every evening.

As an example, having worked a full day in the office, I will finish writing this reply - from home - at about 3.10 am, and still have other things I need to do before I get to my bed. I'll also be working through this weekend, including the bank holiday.

The cracks are beginning to show in me and - as I think you and others have identified - in the magazine.

Pat Byrne, our assistant editor (who also doubled as the sub-editor!) left the mag last week to join Pinnacle UK's support team - and I don't blame him.

He is being replaced by two people - a deputy editor and a sub-editor.

This will mean that there are more man-hours devoted to the mag than at present, since our entire editorial team to date had consisted of me, Pat, and (for 2/3rd of the month) an art editor.

The extra body will mean that there is more time being devoted to writing for the mag, planning what we include, ensuring what we include is really up to the mark, and devising ways of boosting sales and subscriptions.

It will also mean that time can be made to start finalising our plans to do some very special things on the web - things that will add significantly to the value of the mag to the readers, bring in new readers and which will also lessen the time editorial staff spend on admin - freeing them to do things that will have a noticeable effect on the contents of the mag.

At an early stage, we will also be bringing someone on board to oversee our web site, and that person will have to know about desktop video editing and be decently paid, because they'll have to be able to make good editorial decisions, as well as do webby-type work.

The bottom line is that there was never any justification for selling the magazine at the low price that our company pitched it at originally - £2.75 (which rose by just 10p in June last year).

Just look at the prices of other vaguely comparable niche computer titles and you'll see they are all in the £3.95-£5.00 area.

The mag needs to run at a profit and, currently, the figures simply don't add up. Once the company faced up to this original mistake, and realised that the options were closure or my dying on the job, it agreed with my request to put up the price - though I had wanted the increase to be larger still,to at least £3.99.

It's a chicken and egg situation - insufficient revenue means the quality won't be what's required. I'm simply trying to break out of that vicious circle in the only way I think is possible.

I do understand your concerns but want you also to understand mine.

At the end of the day, if the mag doesn't make a profit return (in percentage terms) in line with WV's other titles, it will close. Putting up the price is a gamble but leaving it at £2.85 would have been suicide (and, in my case, almost literally)

If, in a few months, the mag isn't considerably improved, then I will clearly have failed in what I am trying to do or be thought to have brazenly lied about what the price increase was all about.

Bob C

Member posted 01 May 1999 10:37

I posted this in the other forum, then read this!
Just a note to say how refreshing it is to be able to get impartial advice on computer video editing, it IS a complicated field, anyone who has used a computer before or done some NLE will understand that.... you SHOULD increase the price of the magazine (as mentioned in this months issue). Where else can someone find out information like this without spending a lengthy time talking to shop assistants who often have no clue what they are talking about from a practical point of view ? Or spending a small fortune on training videos or seminars....
I passionately believe that the future of television, film and online media is in the hands of the enthusiasts, magazines like Computer Video provide a forum, apply market pressure on manufacturers and encourage people to take the plunge into video editing and production!


and just to add....

Clear well defined advice on this topic is near impossible to find anywhere else! The cover price is NOT unreasonable, in fact it IS very cheap...

Administrator posted 01 May 1999 23:31

Alistair doesn't work for us (honest), hence his cheque is in the post!


Shaun Tregear
Member posted 03 May 1999 22:38
just to add my 2 cents worth to this thread, I support the price increase totaly if the end result means a better, more informative product.
Being an Australian reader the magazine is obviously vastly more expensive than any of the local magazines that I read. ($11.00 Aussie dollars) But hey, where else can I get specialized info about all things non linear? Nowhere!

John Crombie
Member posted 04 May 1999 15:58
I fully appreciate the difficulty of the situation and the personal effort you yourself are putting in to the magazine to try and ensure its success.
The comments I made in the general section of this webboard are my personal opinions of what I'd like to see in the magazine and you are quite right in holding back before formally replying. There is no point in changing the magazines direction based on just one or two peoples opinion.

I believe there is definitely a market for a computer video editing magazine. What price it should be and how often it should be published are questions that need to be answered. I personaly don't believe £3.75 is too expensive for a magazine aimed at this market.

I a potential purchaser of the magazine I look at the contents and decide if there is sufficient in there for me to had over cash. The last couple of months I have said no.

The problem might not be with the magazine but with myself. I grew in knowledge with each issue of the magazine and know find the magazine doesn't offer me as much as it used to, but I'm still want more.

This could indicate that there is room for another magazine aimed at those just past the beginners stage but I believe that C&V can deliver to both markets and beyond. It needs to still cater for the beginners market. Without your publication there are many of us that wouldn't have made the jump into using computers to edit and create our videos. You have given us confidence. Now though, you need to address your regular readers and help them expand further (and keep their readership). We would still like to know what new hardware and software is out there for us to use and if it is something we can not produce our next video without purchasing, but I thing we need more hints and tips from those more advanced than ourselves on how to get the best out of what we have.

This is just my view (again) of course. I wish you luck on what seems to me to be an extremely difficult task.

I wonder if there are some budding authors on this board that can offer you assistance for the love of the magazine and to help it continue?

Contributor posted 06 May 1999 14:46
I think that everyone would always like to see the answers to all their present problems in every magazine that they purchase. In a car magazine wouldn't it be great to see a different review of your car every month..?

There's no way that any editor can satisfy everyone though and just look at the things that you get for your £3.75 a month.

Where else can you find adverts that are relevant to all the cameras, accessories, editing systems, etc that you regularly need to purchase, at discount prices.

Where else can you find news on all the latest NLE system developements, both launched and forthcoming; disk drives; cameras; tripods; batteries; tapes; PC's; software... If it wasn't all in this one Mag then you'd have to buy 3/4 others and read thouroughly...

This BBS is surely worth a few pounds a month in its own right.

My point is that even if you don't like the editorials in a specific month then the magazine is still an invaluable aid to everyday video-editing.

Finally a parting thought. If you'd subscribed to the magazine, then you wouldn't have to worry about the price increase for several months.

Andrew Jarrod

Administrator posted 06 May 1999 23:30
We better come clean and tell people your really do work for CV!

Only joking, folk, honest.


Bob C

Administrator posted 06 May 1999 23:37
Further to what John Crombie was saying:
It's hard to disagree with you and the need to do so much to meet such a diverse need is part of the problem I identified which requires us having extra man-power.

There is a lot of slack in the mag, in terms of pages which can be cut out or cut back, and it is my hope that these can be used to improve the editorial.

But, without the people to do the job, filling those pages with hard information is beyone the mag's ability. And, with a niche publication having a relatively meagre revenue from sales and from advertising, the only way to staff the mag properly is to get more revenue by putting up the cover price and (and this is a distinct possibility, if I have my way), by increasing the cost of advertisements.

Bob C

Contributor posted 07 May 1999 09:49
Indeed I do not work for CV, but stand-by my comments.
One thing I'd thought of Bob.

Would it be practical for you to combine the tutorials that you have run over several issues (e.g. Premiere 5) to be combined into magazines / books that could be purchased separately.?

I for one only discovered your magazine after missing the first 3 Premeire tutorials, and I am sure that there must be many others like me.


Administrator posted 07 May 1999 16:18
[At last, a half-decent BB - well done Bob!]
I've had my head down for a while after finishing the MediaStudio series, but I'm raising it above the parapet again. I seriously hope that Bob can keep CV going, and I do think a price increase is justified. My experience writing the MSP tutorial taught me that producing good material is not easy, this stuff doesn't just fall off lorries. I can see that an easy way to fill copy is to do a lot of superficial reviews of latest products, but the mag can easily degenerate into simply salivating over all the latest hi-tech gadgets, like so many other publications. So far CV has managed reasonably well to avoid that, and I hope Bob can continue in the same vein.

To answer Andrew's point specifically, Bob & I have discussed turning the MSP series into a book, but after reading about the staffing problems I can understand it's not his priority right now. Having made myself a bit more time, I am seriously considering making it into an electronic book, for download and/or CD distribution. Some parts would be freely readable as a taster, but you would need to register (like shareware) to be able to read the whole thing. This makes it viable from my point of view, and sidesteps the problems of upfront costs for paper publication. I would also be able to include some animation and samples. I've sorted out the technology I need for this, and I'd be interested to know what you subscribers think. Would you buy this? Would you download or go for a CD? (my guess is it'll be at least 20MB in size). How much would you pay? (leading question Bob: if you're thinking about cover CDs, I guess this would be suitable candidate material.

On the subject of mag topics - MPEG, CD recording, and VCDs appear to be attracting a lot of interest, and associated confusion. I think CV could gather and impart a lot of useful information here. I've worked out a lot of the answers myself, though by no means all of them. Maybe I feel an article coming on ...

Richard Jones

Administrator posted 07 May 1999 23:31
Half-decent? You beast!
You definitely should turn it into an electronic book, in my opinion, and, of course into a paper book, too.

I certainly would carry it on the cover or, rather, a taster version. You have email about this matter!

For your info, a couple of comparable products, the Premiere and After Effects Training CDs from VTC, sell via the net at US$99.

Take a look at

What struck me when I visited the site today, was the opening offer, which says,

"Play our tutorial movies online from $25 per month for 25 hours of movies - $1 an hour is the cheapest form of training you can get"

As for the idea of you doing a piece for CV about MPEG, etc, I think that is highly presumptious of you!!

(When can we have it?)



Bob C

Contributor posted 08 May 1999 12:59
Firstly, "MPEG, CD recording, and VCDs". Sounds like a great idea.
The tutorial on CD-ROM sounds excellent, although I'd be VERY suprised if you could include example clips, etc and keep it under 20Mb. I though that you'd have had trouble keeping it on one CD. Whenever I'm in Premiere I seem to use 650Mb in just over 2 minutes....

Having said the above about a CD, a book also seems to have it's place still. It's just so much easier to refer to. For example I spend several minutes every day reading through the Premiere 5.1 Manual and it has pride of place sat next to my PC.


Administrator posted 10 May 1999 16:23
The 20MB guess is only based on the content of the articles - text & images. I hadn't counted any animated content in that. I'm not yet sure how much to include, and I'm more thinking on the lines of, say, animated GIFs of certain screens rather than static shots. These won't add enormously to the size.
It mostly depends on how much time is involved. Right now I'm sorting out a layout that works in HTML - once I get that I can set up style-sheets, and should be able to go through all the articles fairly quickly. At this stage I just want to make what was in the CV series quickly and easily available. If I start trying to add loads of extra stuff it'll never get finished.

If this format works and is successful (i.e. you all buy loads of copies ) then a printed version becomes a real proposition - by then edition 2, including CD with samples, etc. etc. Whoa! one step at a time.

Richard Jones

Member posted 10 May 1999 22:30
We really are looking at a digital convergance revolution at the moment, it is possible to achieve complete post-production solutions, publicity and web site design, cd burning, plus design of covers and posters for a single production on one home computer....
Audio CD single with its video on the disc!
Web site to publicise it (mp3 sample download!)
CD design cover and inlay

the beauty of all this is that all the data is interchangeable between software and remains digital!

It would indeed be nice to see an article on mpeg etc.

Oh and Bob, one more thing if CV could host minimal video streams of subscribers work it might negate the need for cover cds....


Member posted 17 May 1999 14:43
Are we not getting away from the orginal point that I made with regards to the cost of the magazine? If replies are not directed towards the price increase then may I suggest that you look in a different section of this web site!


Peter Tomkies
Joined: Apr 26 1999

I don't smoke anymore but I bought a packet of cigs on behalf of a friend yesterday - £3.45 for 20. Two pints set you back more than this price of CV. Let's put the price rise into perspective. The magazine only comes out once a month (for goodness sake we're talking about the field of NLE here - I'm not saying we're all loaded but if you can't fork out £3.55 a month for a half-decent monthly like CV then you probably aren't going to be up for spending the cash needed to actually do any DV work anyway).

In the greater scheme of things the price rise is not a big issue as long as the content is still up to the standard in terms of quality. As a note to Bob however - if you need to put the price up to £3.99 maybe you should. I for one would rather pay the price you need to keep the magazine up to scratch rather than some sort of halfway house measure. The danger is that the price creeps up again in a few months because you didn't bite the bullet now (and people really will get cheesed off if they start find regular price increases).

As for what I would like in the magazine and a response to Tony Bolton look elsewhere on the board...