100% disappointed with the decision to go all digital.

I don't have much to say other then I am completely disappointed with the decision to go all digital. Just because we're techheads, doesn't mean we all walk around with friggin ipads or iphones and read pdfs on the crapper.

I will not be renewing my subscription when whatever digital credits I have left with run out.

My only hope is enough subscribers come here and complain for them to reverse their decision, but I doubt that will happen.

Farewell.

dislike++

dc's picture

Too bad, I really started to like this magazine... But if it doesn't come printed, I will look for an alternative. The end of my subscription?

Charge more, don't kill it.

Felipe Sanchez's picture

I live in Mexico so I'm already paying extra for getting the magazine delivered to my doorstep. If the cost of printing has rised then rise the price, don't kill the publication.

I'm sure most of your subscribers won't mind to pay extra if it means to get a hardcopy (I know I wouldn't mind). We can get gigabytes of real-time updated, HIGH QUALITY digital only content for FREE on the web. A paper magazine is worth subscribing to. A digital one isn't.

I really love LJ, have been a subscriber for several years now and will be deeply sorry to see it go away. But I don't think I'll be renewing my subscription and probably will look into how to get a refund for the remainder of it. I paid for a paper magazine. If you can't (Or won't) provide it then I'd like to get my money back.

I hope you can find a way to keep the printed edition alive. It's been a real treat to get and read LJ all this time.

We paid for paper!

malwiseman's picture

Mr. Sanchez is right, we paid for a paper mag. All the points made for paper are right on. I'm a long time subscriber who probably won't renew.

Malcolm Wiseman
Washington Free DC!

Very disappointed!

boja0003's picture

Needless to say, I am very disappointed! I've already dropped subscriptions for Linux Magazine, PC Magazine and bunch of other print editions when they went digital. Reading from a screen is just not the same as reading the print issue. The same is true for books. Going digital may be a good financial decision, but I believe a bad business decision, especially on long run.

90 issues left on 100 issue subscription....GREAT!!!

mbishop1113's picture

Screwed me good. I like to have the actual magazine on the coffee table at my office. Maybe since LJ has less overhead now they will pass those savings on to the customers...especially the ones that hit refresh in the middle of their renewal and somehow ended up paying for 100 issues instead of a one year subscription.

I agree...

tdunigan's picture

Why did you do this without consulting your readers?

Well I'm glad I didn't do my renewal yet.

Cyber_Mage's picture

I've been bugged for 4 months to renew my subscription that expires in October. Yes, four months already. Now I'm glad I didn't renew my PRINT subscription for another year. Now I know why they started bugging me so long before the subscription expired - it appears they were trying to get my money before they stopped printing.

I subscribed to LJ because it was a print magazine still - I specifically browsed them on the shelf and chose LJ.

Sorry guys, maybe I'm a dying breed but I'm out.

Foreign subscribers is FSCK'ed big time

cfoss's picture

I just payed $140 for a 2 years Magazine + Digital subscription.
Most of that price was for mailing the magazine to Denmark.
I didn't mind paying the price , because i got the Magazine also.

But now i end up with a Digital only magazine , and i didn't even get the August issue in Print.

I'we payed 5.833$ an issue , and still have 19 issues left.
This means i have (110.83$ / 2.56$ a "new" issue) = 43.3 issues left.
If the magazine survive 3+ years.

And can't read it on the "loo" or in the train.

That's a lot of years as an unhappy subscriber.

Why don't you do the right thing , and offer to cancel our remaining subscriptions.

I liked the magazine , but i would like to opt out now.

cfoss

heart broken

bobsol's picture

I am really sorry to hear that LJ is giving up print. This last edition was particularly good.

As others have said, I don't read on my laptop: on the subway, in the can or in bed.

Bad decision.

Jaycuse's picture

I agree. I don't like reading off screens. And reading a magazine on my phone in the bus is terrible compared to reading from a printed one. I won't be renewing when my credits are used up.

The Change to Digital

Waldo's picture

Wow! Hard to digest. I have read all the squawks about going-digital, and they seem indigestible at first look. Maybe that's because I'm only 93 (years old, that is). I've not only lived through, survived and highly enjoyed the many BIG CHANGES that have occurred since my Model T Ford first car; the coming of digital is the greatest of all. Sure, age has done its thing on me in many ways, not the least is what has tipped me into the MD (you'll learn these letters all too soon) vat along with loss of too much hearing, sex, and other "gifts" of the "Golden Years." But an enhanced digital edition of LJ is straight from Heaven. Now I can put off the ravages of MD for a few years at least, because the very things you posters complained about are the boons that give me another 10 years prospect for enjoying life.

I've enjoyed Scientific American Digital ever since its first issue, and have wondered why WIRED and DISCOVER haven't "gone digital" long ago. I do not yet own a Kindle, I-pad or whatchmaycallets. I count on ROKU and Netflix to take the place of TV for me, and whatever else I run onto that I can see on my Workhorse dual-processor HP. Change is the game of Life, I'm sure you'll eventually discover for yourself, as he who resists it is forced to play catch-up later than sooner. Linux itself and Open Source is the wave of the future - nor are digital books the "last word" you'll see and hear about. It's a whole 'nother world "out there." Thank you, LINUX JOURNAL. You've made my day. Keep them coming.

Can you just charge more?

calzplace's picture

As another thought I had on all of this -- have the head honchos at LJ considered just charging more for the print edition? I think I would actually tolerate paying a little extra if your costs for printing have gone up.

So how about you just rely on the wonderful principles of market supply and demand? Rather than just discontinue the magazine and kill your product, how about you just charge more.

I would imagine you will have fewer pissed off subscribers with this approach...

disappointed

John Jolet's picture

This is the same move that byte made years ago. At least THEY gave me the option of getting a refund. I've already moved to all-digital for my book reading, so I'm going to wait and see on this, but one thing i've found having the digital+print subscription is that the digital subscription fits very poorly on my kindle. and the "enhanced" version is going to require me to be online to read it. neither my iPad nor my kindle have 3g connectivity. so now i will not be able to take lj on the plane with me when i fly. I will not be able to read it in the car while my wife drives. i will only be able to read it at my computer....where i can also read hundreds of other, free, technology sites. Like i said, i'll wait and see, but you're really going to have to show me value for my money. in the past, the paper was your value, or part of it.

And I will re-iterate what a lot of others have said....no notice, no poll, no exploration of interest one way or the other from your readership tells us you really don't care what we think, despite the pretty words.

I subscribed because it was a paper magazine

alanjshea's picture

I hope you'll reconsider your decision to go all electronic.

One of the reasons I subscribe to Linux Journal is because it was printed on paper that I could sit in an easy chair and read.

If you go electronic you've lost your distinctive that set you apart from all the other Linux resources in the world. I have too many other things demanding my attention when I'm at the computer to be able to read an electronic edition of LJ. That's why I liked the paper version.

One other consideration: print copies can be shared with other people who can be more easily convinced of the utility and usability of Linux than an electronic edition would. LJ was one of the better evangelists for non-Linux users because of the editorial content, but principally because it was in print. Many non-Linux users are uncomfortable with learning everything off a website or the computer, so having a paper copy of something gives them a comfortable crutch. Paper doesn't quit working randomly some Tuesday afternoon.

If you don't reconsider I'll give it a try, but I seriously doubt I will be able to read an electronic LJ and probably won't renew.

Good luck.

"Can I read Linux Journal on

Anonymous's picture

"Can I read Linux Journal on my iPad?"
bla bla bla

"Can I read Linux Journal on my iPhone?"
bla bla bla

A GNU/Linux magazine talking about Apple products before it mentions OpenSource alternatives or for that matter Android, what is the magazine coming to?

I think Apple should not even be mentioned or cared for, if you feel a need to mention them last.

Android first

Carlie Fairchild's picture

I changed the FAQ just for you. It now reads "Can I read Linux Journal on my Android device?" before it mentions any Apple products. :)

Let me also say that I hear you... it was odd to me also to be creating a device for Apple products. But we have surveyed our readers many times and you'd be surprised how many own Apple mobile devices. I think they're just not vocal here in forums in fear of getting flamed.

We also decided late last night to create an .epub version.

And we're still exploring so send us other ideas for formats you'd like to see LJ in. We're listening.

Carlie Fairchild is the publisher of Linux Journal.

And I think you'd be

nicodr's picture

And I think you'd be surprised how many of your paying customers do *NOT* own an ipad, iphone or any kind of tablet...

Bad business practices

JosephB's picture

With no warning and no 'opt' out for those of us who have already paid in advance for a *print* version of LJ this borders on deceptive business practices. You have offered one thing but are now delivering another thing. This is not apples to apples guys. Look at the freaking threads - people are pissed. Offer a way for refunds and at least we know you are not just taking our money and not giving a damn what we think.

Also not pleased with all digital version.

reriding's picture

I have canceled the automatic renewal of my subscription. I will not pay for a digital version of Linux Journal.

Bummer

Anonymous's picture

I just sent an email to cancel my remaining subscription.

BTW, it's not a FAQ (frequently asked questions) if you made it before the topic was even public. Those questions won't be frequent until they get asked frequently :) Also, probably the most likely to be frequently asked questions are: 1) Is this even legal? 2) Can I get a refund for my remaining subscription?, and 3) Are there any alternative Linux magazines still available in print format?

Cheers

Sad, but expected

pdestefanis's picture

Hello guys,

I agree with everyone in this forum about preferring the paper edition over a digital one; the ability to take it anywhere, not having to have a flashy and expensive e-reader on display, the touch of paper, etc, it second to none.

I am sad, and even a bit angry, but I cannot say this was not expected. Things have been rocky in the printing industry, and as much as I like paper editions, I know I will see them disappearing.

A few weeks ago, The Economist, one of the three paper subscriptions that I receive, moved to digital, but keeping the paper edition. Their financials maybe different, but I would like to zero in on the positives, mainly the quality and design of their Android reader. It's not the same, but sometimes it's pretty good (LJ, hope you take the hint).

My take is that if LJ had to yank the September edition out of the press, without having even an e-reader ready, and without any warning, then the situation has to be dire for the magazine, and I certainly prefer this rather than seeing LJ disappear altogether.

The brusqueness of the move have annoyed many, and with good reason. Through my sadness (as it's not only LJ printed edition, but rather an era that comes to and end) I can only put my trust on the LJ team and believe if it was done like that, it is because there was no other way to keep publishing.

I hope I'm not being naive, as my subscription will run until 2018...

Cheers,

Pablo Destéfanis

Re: Sad, but expected

NYbill's picture

Pablo says, "I am sad, and even a bit angry, but I cannot say this was not expected."

While I agree the print media must be struggling these days, this doesn't give them the right to change what people have paid for. People have subscribed, and paid good money for a print edition of the magazine. For LJ to change what they are giving to their customers mid-subscription is along the lines of a breach of contract.

I loved the paper magazine, but time changes everything

Eduardo Diaz's picture

I mave mixed feelings about the paper magazine end. I really enjoyed to receive it in my (physical) mailbox. However, I understand the change. I still have tons of paper magazines stored in shelves, but I like the options that the ebook format has. I subscribed to the digital + hardcopy option in the last renewal and I always give it a look when it arrives to the email (and read the paper edition, of course, a week later).

I have one proposal for you: make something special in hardcopy each year. An special for 20 years of Linux could be a good candidate. A nice poster, or something like that would be a great adition to the digital subscription.

I hope the same quality I've always enjoyed in LJ will continue.

"The King is dead. Long live the King"

So long, and good luck with that

michaelheyes's picture

I've been a subscriber since about 1999. I understand the issues with printed magazines, and you need to understand that I don't pay for online only magazine subscriptions. I am very disappointed that you did not see fit to discuss ( as far as I know ) the issues and options with your current subscribers.

I will not be renewing my subscription when it expires.

no digital for me either.

dramsey's picture

I've been a subscriber since newsprint edition #1, back when we were installing Linux from a stack of 5.25" floppy diskettes.

I have had several other magazines over the years, but this is only one that I've kept.

I won't renew if digital is the only option, and will pursue a refund.

Digital is not what I bought, paid for, or want.

Sad, I'll really miss it.

David Ramsey
Charlotte, NC

:(

Matti's picture

I just got the sad news.
Linux Journal has been my favourite Linux magazine, and I've happily been a subscriber. However I won't be renewing my subscription. Having the thing on paper is what I like.

ML,
Helsinki

Dislike Digital Magazines

RBarrett's picture

I understand the desire (need?) to get away from print magazines. Electronic viewing is preferred, because it may be environmentally friendly (although questionable). However, I hate reading magazines on the computer screen. They don't work. You must zoom in and out, and scroll all around. It does not fit the screen. Hyperlinking is clunky. And it is only portable, if you are a Borg. And, since my wife and I share the magazine, we will probably be required to get separate subscriptions... because we will only get one version for one device or some bull like that. Yuck!

Bad Decision

carchibald's picture

I've been a subscriber since '98. I've given out gift subscriptions as presents to my family. I've opted for the 100 issues for $100 deal twice now, and even added the digital subscription option the last time. This change has me seriously considering my decision.

The part of LJ that I liked the most *was* that it was paper... I could bring the issues anywhere: easy to have while eating lunch, didn't need to turn it off as we prepared for landing, could help fix the computer which would be used to read the pdf version, etc... I know I could load it onto my phone, but reading that on a 2x2in BB display? No, my eyes are going quick enough as it is.

format

wolsonjr's picture

For most of the reasons already mentioned, I hate to see the paper go.
BUT-
If it has to be, learn something that Tux Magazine learned 6 years ago.
If it's digital only, for heavens sake put it in landscape! Make it fit the medium.

Sorry, but 100% disappointed

Ivo's picture

With 10 issues left I feel betrayed that I paid $130 last year to renew. An avid reader since the beginning of LJ, but I won't be renewing my subscription when it expires. I am looking at computer screens too much anyway.

So long LJ...

Going 100% Digital

Barry Kline's picture

You may consider me to be 100% disappointed. I have downloaded a couple of the PDF versions of the magazine and frankly, gave it up. I don't like reading magazines on my computer. I have been a subscriber of LJ since the second issue (I subscribed at the Dayton Hamvention) and looked forward to the monthly mag arriving in the mail. So that is now at an end. What pisses me off is that I took advantage of the 100 for 100 offer, and now I feel taken advantage of.

Keep your digital content. I'm no longer interested in it. Can I get a refund for the remaining balance?

At least they could do is offer back-issues

Anonymous's picture

I am a new subscriber and I got one physical magazine before you guys switched to digital. OOUCH! One. No warning whatsoever. I would view my magazine subscription as a contract.

At least you could do is "double up the remaining subscription" for all current account holders, to be fair.

You are benefitting from this change to 100% digital but you need to also throw some kind of bone to us.

Not happy...

NYbill's picture

I subscribe to magazines becasue they are magazines! I do not read much at length on computer screens. I don't lounge in the sun room with some type of tablet. I'm not going to squint at my phone and try and read a whole article!

My mailbox is full of useless flyer's or people wanting money from me. It puts a smile on my face when something I'm actually interested in shows up!

I'll be looking into canceling my subscription and getting a refund.

This is a shocking disappointing, guys,
NYbill

The end in near

Anonymous's picture

I'm an old programmer, now retired and I have always enjoyed reading LJ in paper form. I think the subscribers should have been given a vote to pay more to keep the paper. I don't have an e-reader, except my desktop PC, so I'm not about to cart the machine and monitor into the toilet (where I get some my best work done) just to read LJ.

I also like to keep notes on particularly useful articles in the journal. Can't write on e-paper and stuff notes into it so I can just glance at my old issues and recall something I wanted to look at again. Used to be I could give up older copies of the journal to others just by picking it up. Now I suppose I'll have to make a print of what I want to give away or try to email it around. Digital is supposed to be more convenient?

I guess I have no choice but to try the non-paper editions until my subscription runs out. Then we'll see...

To the business types who thought this is a good idea:

Good luck

The end of LJ?

MikeP's picture

Well, I'm not really sure what to do now.

Like others I opted for the $100 renewal offer that extended my subscription to an insane 2018 renewal.

And now the rug's been pulled out from under that subscription by an editorial/business decision to switch from the print edition to PDF.

All I can say is that I've subscribed to many PDF journals in the past -- including decent journals like PHP Architect -- and I NEVER read them. Never.

It's just a waste of my money and a waste of the $100 I paid.

To be honest I fully expected Linux Journal to die long before the subscription ran out, but I figured if I got at least 2-3 years out of it, it's be worth about the same as if I'd renewed for those years alone.

What a shame... perhaps too many of us took advantage of the offer for LJ to keep living? I suppose that's something they should have thought of.

For anyone interested, I also enjoy Linux Format out of the UK, but it's a bit of a different beast than Linux Journal was. And it's not cheap. Maybe this will prod Future Publications into producing a US edition.

Mike

I will give it a try.

Aaron H's picture

I do understand the rising cost issue and am glad to see that they are trying to avoid the fate of many other magazines. I have many more years of subscription ahead so I will be glad to give it a try.

I have already loaded it on my kindle and it reads well. I haven't had to zoom in yet to read normal articles. Since digital is now the focus I would like to see a MOBI & EPUB format created specifically for the Kindle or other readers as that is where many of us will be reading from now on.

Please keep up your side of the deal LJ and keep each issue filled with quality content.

The end of LJ?

MikeP's picture

Well, I'm not really sure what to do now.

Like others I opted for the $100 renewal offer that extended my subscription to an insane 2018 renewal.

And now the rug's been pulled out from under that subscription by an editorial/business decision to switch from the print edition to PDF.

All I can say is that I've subscribed to many PDF journals in the past -- including decent journals like PHP Architect -- and I NEVER read them. Never.

It's just a waste of my money and a waste of the $100 I paid.

To be honest I fully expected Linux Journal to die long before the subscription ran out, but I figured if I got at least 2-3 years out of it, it's be worth about the same as if I'd renewed for those years alone.

What a shame... perhaps too many of us took advantage of the offer for LJ to keep living? I suppose that's something they should have thought of.

For anyone interested, I also enjoy Linux Format out of the UK, but it's a bit of a different beast than Linux Journal was. And it's not cheap. Maybe this will prod Future Publications into producing a US edition.

Mike

let's hope for refunds..

lnxfrk's picture

I too opted for the 100 for $100 offer with a renewal somewhere in the 2019 range. With 96 issues left of that subscription I surely hope there is a way to obtain a refund as I dislike reading digital editions.

I stare a a computer all day at work the last thing I want to do is sit in front one just to relax and read a magazine...

Linux Pro Magazine is also another magazine I tend to read frequently, it's a bit less costly than Linux Format per issue but I have enjoyed Linux Format from time to time too. Linux Journal had been my favorite since seeing my first issue in 1996.

Sucks that we were so blind-sided with this news, lesson learned for subscribing/renewing any publication over a year time frame. Well, it was fun while it lasted..

Eric

bye

haaja's picture

I feel betrayed. I just ordered magazine for a year and I received 2 physical copies before this announcement. Consider me as ex-subscriber.

Another Unhappy Subscriber

stever62's picture

I already spend 10-12 hours a day looking at a computer screen or my android. A good (print) magazine was like a vacation.

There is no way I'll find the same enjoyment out of an electronic version. I will give it a try (until my subscription expires), however I seriously doubt I will be renewing again.

I'll go elsewhere.

Adam Kneen's picture

I subscribe to LinuxJournal because it's a HARDCOPY magazine with good linux-related articles.

If the hardcopy option goes away, so will my subscription.

There's already PLENTY of other digital-only linux content out there, if I'm only provided with a digital version (or have to print my own copy!?!) of LinuxJournal, I'll just subscribe to one of those other (more obscure/expensive?) hard-copy linux magazines.

It's been fun while it lasted..

Not happy...

Mike Maloney's picture

I do not own an e-reader, iphone, or ipad. I signed up for the 100 for 100 too. Though I consider myself a tech geek, I prefer the paper versions of all the magazines to which I subscribe. Lightweight, portable, AND you don't need a power source.

I already spend a considerable amount of time in front of a screen doing my job. I do not want to spend more time tied to a desk and chair to e-read.

This is a sad day and I am predicting the slow demise of a once great magazine.

The end of LJ ?

Yoav Aner's picture

As the others here, I kinda feel betrayed. It happened to me before with Doctor Dobbs Journal, who went thinner and thinner, and now is only a digital edition (which I don't read).

I've really enjoyed the fact that it was a real magazine I can take with me. Every time it arrived in the post was exciting. Feels rather strange to get informed about this immediate change this way too.

I doubt I'd be renewing. Not that I don't want to support you guys for doing a great job, but there are plenty of online resources I want to but never read online, to be actually paying for something I won't read either...

The end of LJ ?

Yoav Aner's picture

As the others here, I kinda feel betrayed. It happened to me before with Doctor Dobbs Journal, who went thinner and thinner, and now is only a digital edition (which I don't read).

I've really enjoyed the fact that it was a real magazine I can take with me. Every time it arrived in the post was exciting. Feels rather strange to get informed about this immediate change this way too.

I doubt I'd be renewing. Not that I don't want to support you guys for doing a great job, but there are plenty of online resources I want to but never read online, to be actually paying for something I won't read either...

wrong way

msolso's picture

Im also subscribed to phparch, last year they go 100% digital, with pdf, ebook,..., since then every month i've been downloading the pdf, but i havent read any issue! Why? Because my "learning time" at the desktop it's already filled with other ways, and i havent been able to change that in a year. And no, a tablet is not a solution, it will be another desktop (rss, web sites, ...). I don't know maybe i need another year...

how much would the subscription cost increase to keep paper?

kayl's picture

Just curious... LJ is one of the magazines that my husband and I pass back and forth... neither of us particularly like yet more screen reading.

And yes, we can print the pdfs and stick 'em in a binder to read, but that's a bit of a hassle. I'm kinda thinking double the current fees would still be within our comfort zone to keep a print edition.

(BTW, for those (like us) who eschew smart phones, e readers and the like, there is a conversion utility that works pretty well: http://calibre-ebook.com/ )

On the other hand, this decision may help solve the pile o' magazines problem here.

I agree with the idea of

KurtC's picture

I agree with the idea of increasing the subscription price. I'm really surprised that you didn't consider that option first.

This is obsurd!

calzplace's picture

The entire point of a "magazine" these days is to have a physical copy of something. I can read about Linux related news and new products anywhere on the tubes. I read LJ 100% on the toilet. I'm not going to pinch & zoom on my phone while I'm pinching off a loaf, just to read LJ's mediocre content.

Consider this subscriber 100% unsatisfied. I guess it's time to switch to a different Linux mag with the balls to kill some trees. Anyone have suggestions on a replacement?

Beginning of the end

Disappointed's picture

I did opt for the 100 for $100, and regret it now. Of course, I suspect this is only the beginning of the end and we can look forward to an announcement that our subscriptions will be fulfilled with the digital edition of PC World or somesuch. It was great while it lasted.

me too, 100% disappointed with the decision to go all digital

Al Cot's picture

I second 100% the disappointment of going 100% digital, as well as my intention (sadly) not to renew when my digital subscription expires.

I can understand how tough it can be to sustain the cost of printing and mailing today, but I see very little reasons for me to pay for digital articles (maybe updated once every month and maybe already 1-2 month old when published) when I get already lots of information real time already on the web, in different forms (audio, video, text, forums, social media, web sites, etc.).

As a tech guy, I do not have plan to use an Ipad in the near future, I (still, mostly) do not carry my Linux notebook to the bathroom to read online digital editions of newspapers. I still find the paper edition quite handy to carry around and read and use for reference when I am on the go. You will probably find more business people using tablets to read digital media, than tech guys reading digital magazines like Linux Journal on Ipads or the like.

I hope this is not just a crazy response to the crazy idea that paper media will completely disappear, in favour of an all digital market. Maybe some, maybe most, paper media will disappear some time in the future, but clearly paper media will last in some form or another.

This change looks to me more a way to cut costs, and wrong hope to make more profits, not to serve readers. Both digital **and** paper editions should be available to better serve your readers.

I wish Linux journal all the very best, and hope they will prove that I am wrong, and this move is not in anticipation of a complete failure due to lack of paying subscribers and advertisers for a digital only edition of Linux magazine.

Good luck in your new venture :-)

Al Cot
(a long time reader and paper edition subscriber from Milan, Italy)

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