Yes, Bob. There is innovation in print: A micro magazine called Abe’s PennyMay 20, 2009
Innovation in print is well, alive and kicking. Abe’s Penny: A micro magazine created by Anna and Tess Knoebel, is the latest of such innovation. Each volume of Abe’s Penny “contains four postcards that subscribers receive one by one, once per week, for one month. Each postcard features an image and a few lines of text. The full set of four postcards is a full story.”
This new magazine caught my attention and provided a nice answer to my friend Bob Sacks who spoke earlier in the week in Colorado and defined the word magazine as anything but ink on paper. So, Bob, read my interview with Anna Knoebel and, please, come down from you high horse and discover the beauties (and money making) advantages of ink on paper. (By the way Bob, can you name ten magazines with no ink on paper editions that are making any considerable amount of money? I can name hundreds if not thousands of ink on paper magazines that are making a lot of money, even in this depressed economy).
Well, enough of Bob and plenty of Anna and her Abe’s Penny. I asked Anna:
SH: What was the idea behind Abe’s Penny?
AK: Why does anyone start a magazine? The idea definitely didn’t start with, “Let’s figure out a way to sell advertising.” We were looking for a way to communicate. Abe’s Penny starts a conversation. First, between the artist and the writer, then between the result of their work and the person who reads it.
SH: In this age of digital and digital social networks, what do you
expect to achieve with Abe’s Penny and how do you propose to do that?
AK: Our current aim is simple: to pursue the dialogue. Of course, any print publication competes with online, but we’ve received such positive feedback. People still want tangible things. Another really positive result of starting Abe’s Penny has been discovering communities of people working to preserve letter writing / mail art: Postcrossing, The Letter Writers Alliance, PodPost, etc.
SH: Is there future for print or you are just “yet another crazy print lover”?
AK: We don’t consider ourselves fanatical about print. It’s more about recognizing a common desire to share experiences, and then providing space — in our case a postcard — where those experiences can be shared. It’s nothing new. It doesn’t matter whether you find it online, in something you hold, in people you meet, but it matters that you find it. Is there a future for print? Books have been around since something like 2400 BC. Seems like print will last.