the sound of heavy thump followed by a clickety clack promises a great night ahead. your favorite magazine has just been delivered to yer mailbox and there's an inexplicable itch preventing you from keeping your hands off the pages. a great feeling, right? you are a member of the subscriber team.
i believe in yearly subscriptions and still prefer a printed version of my favorite readings. knowing that i'll be among the first to get their hands on a certain piece of journalism is exhilarating. winnowing your own selection from the myriad of available magazines tells something about you as a person: i'm voting for this team here. i also like the hassle-free method of receiving my monthly dose of information: sometimes i enjoy browsing magazines and journals at bookstores, but mostly i cannot be bothered.
at this moment i only have one subscription, though. the reason comes down to feeling repeatedly unappreciated. for me, part of sending a subscription out is the message that "i do not care if not every issue is perfect – i believe in you." point being, when i decide to take the chance that not every issue of the chosen magazine is interesting or well-made, i promise to contribute whether there is a failure and not abandon my magazine for lapses in concentration. my financial bestowal is my handshake: "i have deemed you worthy and promise to stand by you, no questions asked."
the feeling of being unvalued is derived from the trend of rewarding us continuous subscribers with ever-increasing yearly fees. increases in prices are not newsworthy by themselves, but when they occur together with significant decreases elsewhere one cannot help but feel troubled. not only are several issues of almost every imaginable magazine on sale every year, the offers for new subscribers feel like a smack in the face every time i flip through a magazine.
for the fear of sounding like a whiney bitch, i must assure you that i am not entirely clueless and do understand the importance of hauling new subscribers. nevertheless, it has become significantly more lucrative on my part to end my subscriptions and settle for a few sale issues and short term subscriptions – i actually end up saving money that way.
the paradoxical part is that treating continuous subscribers well ought to be important to magazines and journals. while i'm ready to remain a steady source of income for a significant number of magazines, i actually have to prefer being harassed by their sales people (who aren't exactly cheap to employ) on a regular basis because i end up losing money for being daft and loyal. what is the point, really? it's a lose-lose situation if there ever was one.
moreover, knowing full well that publishing a fashion or a lifestyle magazine in finnish is not exactly a remunerative business, i'd love to promote those who are willing to take the risk and do their best. nonetheless, i find it useless with the kind of special offers i see fluttering down from between the pages and landing next to my subscription bill.
saddened, i stopped subscribing to image after an uninterrupted period of fifteen years just because of the incompatibility between what i was paying and what i saw others being offered. it sucks, and it seriously pisses me off knowing that there's an institute of finnish journalism suffering, but that i'd be buffoon accepting their inexplicable tokens of gratitude. if i wanted to donate to charity, i'd still choose worthier causes – despite being aware that many people involved in creating these magazines are not exactly well-off.
thus, the only magazine i subscribe to is new york magazine. it pops through my mailbox almost every week, filled with well-written stories and news from the big apple. it is my humble way of keeping track of my favorite city in the world. the subscription is 75$, delivered – less than 2$ per issue. i am well aware that they're not making profit from my contribution and i wouldn't dare suggesting that a magazine should come that cheap. but it does feel like a reward for my commitment.
soon i will renew my subscription for another year. moreover, i am considering subscribing to intelligent life which has not failed me once during its existence, but four yearly issues are not too troublesome to fetch from the newsagent. i am continuously on the lookout for something else, hopefully finnish worthy of subscribing, but feel like my hands are tied.
am i the only one frustrated? any suggestions?
p.s. since i am aware that people from several publishing houses visit my blog regularly, i feel brave enough to suggest a small improvement: could you please add a little tick-box to your subscription cards where one can refuse to receive any additional crap with the subscription? no, i do not want your large logo towel. no, i do not want your trashy jewelry. no, i do not want that plastic pouch you for some incomprehensible reason call a "purse". no thank you, i just want the magazine.