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Crowdfunded Linux Voice Magazine Releases First Issue CC-BY-SA 62

M-Saunders (706738) writes Linux Voice, the crowdfunded GNU/Linux magazine that Slashdot has covered previously, had two goals at its launch: to give 50% of its profits back to the community after one year, and release each issue's contents under the Creative Commons after nine months. Well, it's been nine months since issue 1, so the whole thing is now online and free to share. Readers and supporters have also made audio versions of articles, for listening to on the commute to work.
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Crowdfunded Linux Voice Magazine Releases First Issue CC-BY-SA

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  • 9 months? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by innocent_white_lamb ( 151825 ) on Tuesday November 18, 2014 @12:56PM (#48411629)

    I haven't read this magazine yet; diidn't realize it existed until today.

    However, the computer industry moves so quickly -- is the information stale or outdated nine months after initial publication? If so, what's the point, other than a public relations exercise? This may be vulnerable to the same malady that killed the paper computer magazines of the 80's and 90's.

    • Re:9 months? (Score:5, Informative)

      by M-Saunders ( 706738 ) on Tuesday November 18, 2014 @01:02PM (#48411675)
      Linux Voice is heavily tutorial based, and we try to make them last as long as possible. But yes, some information can get outdated -- and that's why we're releasing content CC-BY-SA! Anyone can now take it and update it, put it online elsewhere, to benefit the whole community.
    • Re:9 months? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by MacTO ( 1161105 ) on Tuesday November 18, 2014 @02:28PM (#48412347)

      Perhaps it is a good idea to read Linux Voice before commenting upon it's value, simply based upon the merit that it is a magazine.

      While certain aspects of a magzine do go out-of-date quickly, others don't. Nine month old news, not so great. Nine month old reviews are okay. They'll introduce you to a product, even if some information is outdated. Nine old month tutorials can be useful.

      Magazines do have merits other than content. The flow of information is more paced. Reading the news daily (or even hourly) means that you are more likely to run into redundant details across multiple articles. It also means that there is less time to write comprehensive stories, verify details, and edit the material. I'm not saying that they're perfect, but you really have to wonder about the quality of a lot of the online media when they publish as much a day as a magazine publishes in a month. Actually, I don't have to wonder. I've gone to many sites where the articles range from terrible to excellent, primarily because the authors range from terrible to excellent. Yet they won't cut the terrible authors because it's more important to have a continuous stream of updates than it is to invest in quality.

  • Slashdot (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 18, 2014 @01:12PM (#48411765)

    Here we go again, /. at its worst.
    A 116 page CC licensed magazine with dozens of articles, and our comments?
    That their format sucks, that it's out of date, that there is a smell spelling error on page 87, and so on.
    Way to go guys and gals, a fine example of what /. appears to be all about.

    • by jasno ( 124830 )

      The smart folks left /. years ago.

      I still use /. as a news aggregator, as they *sometimes* post stories that I don't find elsewhere.

      In the olden days you'd find some real insights in the comments section. Nowadays you're better off on reddit(*shudder*).

      • There are still a few of us left ... ... although with that the shitty UI Beta I wonder how long before it drives the rest of us away for good.

        Reddit? Please. While it has some fantastic sub-reddits, Reddit is the Dig of Slashdot. The majority is full of whiny emo teens who down vote anything "Just Because". It's moderation system sucks -- it provides no context for why something was up/down voted.

        • by jasno ( 124830 )

          Don't get me wrong, reddit sucks... it's just better than slashdot in some of the technical subreddits.

    • The criticisms are a bit over the top. However, the real issue is "why?"

      Back in the days of dial-up internet, linux magazines came with cover disks. It's how I got old versions of Mandrake, Suse, etc.

      Now? High-speed internet killed the cover cds and the later cover dvds. The articles? Reviews are a dime a dozen on the internet (and new ones at that). Example: Review: FreeBSD 10.0. 10.1 has already been released and reviewed elsewhere. Tutorials on vim and grep? Build dynamic web pages? Why? Tis

      • Re:Slashdot (Score:4, Informative)

        by M-Saunders ( 706738 ) on Tuesday November 18, 2014 @02:29PM (#48412353)
        Well, our 3,200+ (and growing) subscribers have a different view, clearly. Not everyone has the time or inclination to search around the web, and while there's certainly lots of very good content out there, "it's like drinking from a fire hydrant" as the old quote goes. Our readers like a montly dose of Linux-related features, tutorials, interviews and reviews, neatly packaged up into one bundle, from a team they can trust. Sure, the market for computer magazines is much smaller today. But there clearly is a market, otherwise we wouldn't have raised £127,000 in a crowdfunding campaign and have a very satisfied readership (only three subscription cancellations since we started!). And of course some of the reviews on that page are a bit dated -- it's from nine months ago! But the tutorials should still be useful, and everyone is welcome to update them and share with the community.
        • Most people can't be arsed (using the Brit term seeing as your subscription prices are quoted in GBP) to cancel a subscription - the real "rubber hits the road" question is renewal rates, which will lead to the churn rate, cost of acquisition per new reader, etc.

          You may be right, but the odds, sadly, are against it. Add to that the extra costs of maintaining both an e-Zine format and a print format (with higher production and distribution costs, even though you charge more for the print edition, it's prob

          • Well, let's wait and see. When we started this, Slashdot was chock full of the same comments: print is dead, nobody will back you, you'll be gone in three months, etc. etc. etc. Here we are almost a year later, successful and growing, so we're not worried about what the naysayers think. And I don't think Linux has become a boring infrastructure OS. There's been a boost of interest in open source and open platforms since the NSA/PRISM etc. revelations, and the Raspberry Pi is getting loads of people into Li
      • I like physical books - there are people like me who still buy them. I like dead-tree newspapers - I, like many, still get theirs daily. I like dead-tree magazines - easy to flick-through and just browse. So that's why.

        Oh, and yes, I am a subscriber to Linux Voice.

        (So to the magazine and its staff - thanks).
        • I still like dead tree books, papers, etc. But ... they're an archaism. Harder to search than a digital library. Uses more resources. A PITA to store and move. A lot harder to recycle than a bunch of bits on a usb key. Restricted to static content. Needs yet another separate print edition for people with moderate visual handicaps (which, in practical terms, mostly means "forget it" or being stuck using an audio format).

          Digital isn't "the way of the future" any more. In another generation or two "boo

          • You forgot to mention "graph-plotters". Absolutely fascinating to watch in action. Around in the late '80s and early '90s for drawing A4 diagrams. Run from an old-style IBM PC.

            (But then I also remember punched cards!)
            • ... and punched tape ... and acoustic modems ... and lubricated ball joints and tie-rods ... inner tubes for cars ... black-and-white tvs ... ghetto blasters ...
    • ...and let's not forget sanctimonious comments from ACs.
  • Well, it's a bit up and down. If you're having problems, you can get the mag and audio via bit torrent from the pirate bay. http://thepiratebay.se/search/... [thepiratebay.se]
  • Awesome magazine (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I just wanted to say that I bought a subscription to this magazine, and it was money well spent. Great great great read. More Linux than you can handle.

    Disclaimer: I'm right in their target demo: Intermediate Linux user. Computer n00bs and crusty old SysAdmins may have a different experience.

  • A new magazine says it will donate half the "profit."
    • by geggo98 ( 835161 )

      A new magazine says it will donate half the "profit."

      What else should they donate? The costs?

  • M-Saunders, please ignore the hate and thanks for your enlightened views on publishing. I was disappointed when you guys "forked" LinuxFormat but I have enjoyed what I have consumed of the new magazine and podcast. I hope your business model is sustainable and look forward to catching up with the issues I've missed.

  • I have been a subscriber since the beginning (having come over from Linux Format). I just wanted to say to any Linux Voice folks in this form, great job and keep up the good work! I love the magazine!
    • Thanks ponfgong-e, much appreciated!
    • I also have been a subscriber since the beginning and the Magazine is great. A lot of fun and a lot of useful info/tutorials etc.

      And there is still room for a magazine, I travel on Helicopter, onto Offshore Installations with very little network connection available. There are still plenty of places without good network coverage.

      So having the paper Magazine is important for me

  • Can anyone having the digital subscription tell me how it is delivered? Manual download on the website? Per email? Per cloud-drive (dropbox, onedrive, owncloud, etc)? FTP (pull / push)? Torrent? Amazon whispernet? Something else?
    • by bentos ( 3426719 )
      It's a manual download from the website. We e-mail everyone once it's up, then you can grab it when you want. There are full issue PDFs and ePubs, and per-article PDFs.
  • I like my subscription to the magazine. I appreciate their open sourcing the contents (it was a factor in subscribing) but other matters were of greater importance in making my decision.

    The main one was that I'd enjoyed the writers' articles in their prior venture (which I also still read). Secondly, I thought the pricing of the digital subscription was reasonable, unlike others whose digital subscription price approaches that of the printed. Finally, I've begun to claw myself away from having to fond

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