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NEWS: Freelancers Report that PiQ's July Issue Is Its Last


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Zac
ANN Executive Editor


Joined: 05 Jan 2002
Posts: 7830
Location: Anime News Network Technodrome
PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 3:12 pm Reply with quote
dragonrider_cody wrote:
And I wouldn't be too suprised to see Wizard shut down Anime Insider. After all, Insider's website has been dead for months now.


http://www.wizarduniverse.com/anime.html

That is Wizard's anime site. The staff of AI work on it in addition to the anime. Also, Anime Insider is still a very successful publication.
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MrVince



Joined: 23 Aug 2006
Posts: 67
PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 3:52 pm Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
Uh, I don't think you know who you're speaking to. That's Chris Johnston, former NewtypeUSA editor.


FullmetalCJ wrote:
I used to live in Houston and I used to be an editor at Newtype USA. Hi! *waves* Greg's a good guy and I'm sure he was told exactly what he said. But it is unfortunately not the entire truth.


This would not have been an issue if FullmetalCJ filled out his profile and listed his recent and current positions. I see he is listed as an "industry insider", but it seems that forum title could be assigned to the CEO of jlist.com.

I know you guys in the journalism profession and news industry are pretty good about listing your credentials (ie, occupation) and personal/direct relevance to the conversation. It assists in immediately establishing credibility and authority on the subject. One of the many examples of people who do that are saishokushugisha, who also listed her role in (what seems to be) a quick sig with her name and position when giving direct insight on the matter.

FullmetalCJ- add your info and we shouldn't have to question your authority on the matter again.

Thanks

Note:It's not only Zac who made quick replies about Chris Johnston's background with the intent of identifying him, but their messages were still to the same effect.
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FullmetalCJ
Industry Insider


Joined: 10 Aug 2004
Posts: 62
Location: Atlanta, GA
PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:00 pm Reply with quote
MrVince wrote:
CJ - add your info and we shouldn't have to question your authority again.


Point taken. Fixed.
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poonk



Joined: 05 Jun 2008
Posts: 1490
Location: In the Library with Philip
PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 12:39 am Reply with quote
Regarding this whole debacle, I truly count myself as lucky that my annual subscription just happened to run out with that last NTUSA issue. I'm pretty sure what has made people rather irate about the whole thing is that there was no practical warning whatsoever about the impending switch. I had gotten my "Renew Now!" letter shortly before that last issue (!) and yeah, I renewed. About 2 months later, I realized, "Hey, I haven't gotten NewType for a while..." I had to read about NT's cancellation here, in the ANN forum; I was never contacted about my renewal (or my $90 check). I emailed the company, asking about the status of said check (and basically saying I either wanted the uncashed check back or a refund, instead of 2 years of a magazine that I didn't sign up for). In return, I got what seemed like a "form letter" (via email) about how checks made out to NewType were returned (uh, well, I never got mine back, but it was never cashed either, so I just hope it got shredded or something). So ultimately, I lucked out in that I lost no money, nor was I compelled to accept a replacement magazine. But needless to say, it still left a very bad taste in my mouth.

Honestly, though, I never saw an issue of PiQ; I would've happily perused it in the bookstore, had I been able to find it, and perhaps even bought it on its own merits, had I liked it (although I don't game, I don't watch American TV series, etc., so I'm not sure it would've had enough anime/manga content to satisfy me). I just bristled at the thought of having a subscription forced upon me, sight unseen, when that wasn't what I signed up for. Not to mention-- I remember reading that they decided their target demographic was "18-25 year old males" (or something to that effect), which is not me, and... well, it sort of made me feel left out and/or discounted, as a female fan (for example, I really liked reading Lisa Cooper's column on the month's notable BL manga releases, which I somehow doubt made it into PiQ). All in all, though, I was truly sad when I heard of NT's demise; I always loved to slowly flip through those big, glossy pages, pore over upcoming series, "The Art of" features, seiyuu interviews, etc., etc. I will miss it.

wintermoon wrote:
I worked at Barnes & Noble for three years and I can't even begin to tell you how many book and mag covers I've stripped and sent back. If it sits on the shelf too long you simply rip of the cover and send it back.
No joke! I worked at a large B&N for 5 years, and the waste involved is truly ridiculous (and I'm sure it's depressingly standard in the industry and not just a B&N thing, either).
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jeffk



Joined: 26 Jun 2008
Posts: 4
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 11:28 am Reply with quote
I know I'm late in joining in on the demise of PiQ but after reading through the posts and a number of blogs I felt compelled to join in.

PiQ was a nice mag, somewhat unfocused and certainly not a replacement for Newtype USA. Had it been launched without a connection to NTUSA and promoted as an entertainment mag it's live may have been longer.

Word was that perhaps the license for Newtype USA was too stiff to continue. With a pub teetering on profitability something like a license fee can cause the scale to tip in the red.

Neither mags closing inherently means that ADV itself is in trouble. Perhaps they have decided to focus on what they do best, produce anime. The magazine publishing business is tough and if a company is not going to spend the money to buy distribution it's in trouble from the start. Unless of course they are happy with selling 20k copies of each issue.

The reason Otaku USA has grown quickly is because of its distribution. And it's a good pub. It takes money to get on newsstands and the more newsstands a mag is on the greater the chance someone buys a copy and then subscribes.
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FullmetalCJ
Industry Insider


Joined: 10 Aug 2004
Posts: 62
Location: Atlanta, GA
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 5:40 pm Reply with quote
jeffk wrote:
The reason Otaku USA has grown quickly is because of its distribution. And it's a good pub. It takes money to get on newsstands and the more newsstands a mag is on the greater the chance someone buys a copy and then subscribes.


I'm guessing "jeffk" means you're Jeff Kight from Otaku USA. Nice stealth spam you got there.

Since you replied to this, I feel compelled to respond. I used to be the Executive Editor of Newtype USA and feel strongly about this.

No, Otaku USA is not a "good pub." It's a magazine that stole its ideas, format, look, "USA" suffix, DVD and layout from Newtype USA and banked largely on consumer confusion at the newsstand to sell issues (which got even easier when NTUSA went away, lucky for you guys). You proceeded to trumpet how unbiased a magazine it was while often having large news items/features promoting books the magazine's editors and contributors had written. And you printed columns on vinyl toys written by a guy who makes a living selling those same toys and often spent lots of real estate promoting his own merchandise. Unbiased? Hardly. Finally, for a magazine that claims to be for only the "hardcore" fans Otaku USA has spent its last 3 recent months peddling only mainstream titles like Naruto, Bleach and Dragon Ball Z on its cover--apparently in a vaguely Beckett Anime-style attempt to sell issues. What's on your next cover, InuYasha? One Piece? Oh, maybe Bleach again?

Let's call a spade a spade. Otaku USA was conceived from the beginning as a Newtype USA copycat and will always be a poorly executed, amateurish dupe in my eyes. (Despite having the opportunity to do something original or fill the void left by Animerica's departure.) My only regret is that ADV's ill-advised business "tactics" in late 2007 caused Kadokawa to pull the Newtype license before Otaku USA fell back into the porta-potty from whence it came. Hopefully though, as your pool of anime advertisers shrinks and costs of paper/postage and that free DVD go up, you're circling the bowl. Since you feel the need to advertise the mere existence of your magazine in a PiQ topic, maybe that time is near. I can only hope.

Sure I'm bitter. But when someone attempts to copy your act so completely like the way OUSA did (badly, thankfully--but it may have fooled some) I think I'm entitled.

/rant over
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TokyoGetter



Joined: 28 Nov 2006
Posts: 416
Location: CA. You can tell by the low moral standards.
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 8:29 pm Reply with quote
PWNED!
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Big Hed



Joined: 04 May 2006
Posts: 1607
Location: Melbourne, Australia
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 8:43 pm Reply with quote
FullmetalCJ wrote:
My only regret is that ADV's ill-advised business "tactics" in late 2007 caused Kadokawa to pull the Newtype license before Otaku USA fell back into the porta-potty from whence it came.


Oh, so the proverbial plug was in a sense pulled on both sides of the Pacific, then? Well, it's good to have a more concrete explanation now. Sad to hear that's how it went down, though.

I wonder if Kadokawa is still considering a North American re-launch? Although it seems to me there wouldn't be any likely takers. Funimation is probably focused on riding the wave from double-digit growth, and although Bandai is healthy, I imagine they have their hands full with new releases and such. I don't think Viz would either, since they have existing print brands.
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VIPPER.



Joined: 10 May 2008
Posts: 10
Location: 2channel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 9:50 pm Reply with quote
Otaku USA is actually good since its writers have opinions, unlike the Newtype USA robots.
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HSaabedra



Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 18
Location: Fort Worth, TX
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 10:58 pm Reply with quote
I find it funny if a bit disconcerting that a former ADV employee would lash out at their former competitor because it serves to feed into the perception that the company as a whole lacked the business sense and professionalism expected of people working for a large corporate entity.

You may not like Otaku USA, but judging by its growth you have to concede that they are succeeding where you ultimately failed after the many revisions and content adjustments that NewType USA went through.

Being a former reader of the magazine since the first issue until its last, I can say that it was doomed to failure due not to the cover price, overvalued subscription rates, or even the shift away from the Japanese format.

What ultimately killed the magazine was the lack of actual content, just as it will kill any print magazine.

The fact that you and your team never even attempted to address the flaws in your DVD review policies is proof enough that a lot of people disliked the magazine because of it, and it strikes me even stranger that you kept dodging the issue after being called on it many times on another forum I frequent on top of never really working to change the perception of the magazine as a mouthpiece for ADV.

You shouldn't be so quick to throw stones when you yourself were in a large glass building.
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dragonrider_cody



Joined: 14 Jun 2008
Posts: 2506
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 11:03 pm Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
dragonrider_cody wrote:
And I wouldn't be too suprised to see Wizard shut down Anime Insider. After all, Insider's website has been dead for months now.


http://www.wizarduniverse.com/anime.html

That is Wizard's anime site. The staff of AI work on it in addition to the anime. Also, Anime Insider is still a very successful publication.


I do realize that the website is now fuctional, but it went several months without an update. (I gave up on checking on it in April, so sorry for the mix up.) And right now, when even very large magazines like Time are having significant drops in revenue, I doubt Anime Insider could be very successful. I'm not saying it doesn't make money, it's just hardly a runaway hit.
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nekedo



Joined: 16 Nov 2006
Posts: 92
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 11:25 pm Reply with quote
I absolutely despise OUSA and AI, and will forever miss NTUSA. I have always viewed OUSA as a cheap copycat, and I refuse to buy a magazine that relies on mainstream properties such as DBZ, Naruto, and Bleach to sell copies. Sure, it works, jeffk has no qualms about reminding us of that, but I prefer the more "underground" anime, as I no longer watch any of the afore mentioned shows.

AI is worse. Sure, it covered a vast area of anime, but their writers are incredibly immature, and their "Animail" (or whatever it's called) feature houses an insensitive, egotistical bastard who thinks it's fun to poke at autism, using it to describe fans who obsess over Naruto.

If there was a way to bring NewType back, I'd be all over it. The articles were interesting, as was the settei covered in each issue, and I loved the heads up on series that would be airing soon in Japan. I can't pledge my allegiance to any other anime magazine until one comes along that can challenge the greatness that was NewType.

And that is my opinion.[/b]
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FullmetalCJ
Industry Insider


Joined: 10 Aug 2004
Posts: 62
Location: Atlanta, GA
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:23 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:
I find it funny if a bit disconcerting that a former ADV employee would lash out at their former competitor because it serves to feed into the perception that the company as a whole lacked the business sense and professionalism expected of people working for a large corporate entity.


So an Otaku USA employee hopping on a topic about PiQ (without prefacing their comments with the nugget that they work for OUSA) to promote their magazine...that's professional. *shrug*

Quote:
The fact that you and your team never even attempted to address the flaws in your DVD review policies is proof enough that a lot of people disliked the magazine because of it, and it strikes me even stranger that you kept dodging the issue after being called on it many times on another forum I frequent on top of never really working to change the perception of the magazine as a mouthpiece for ADV.


Which flaw are you referring to? That we never trashed anything? I think I've addressed this plenty and certainly never shied away from talking about it. Newtype USA was modeled after the tone/voice of the Japanese magazine. Show me where Newtype Japan has torn a DVD/show/manga a new one. They haven't. The magazine (like many other anime magazines in Japan) is mostly promotional in nature, meant as a buyer's guide/catalog to guide you to releases you might like. It's a fan book, a catalog, a TV Guide kind of resource to new releases -- more informative in nature with a heavy focus on art. That's what Newtype USA was. What were you expecting exactly?

Also, regarding being a mouthpiece for ADV. I dunno how much more I can say it but we tried to cover EVERYONE's titles as equally as humanly possible. Even Viz, who was wholly uncooperative in terms of allowing us to properly cover their titles. We found a way to fit them in. And we didn't have to. It often took teeth-pulling or finding alternate means of covering their titles. But certainly, there was no way Newtype could've existed without covering ADV's titles just as equally as anyone else's. After all, they were (maybe not now) one of the biggest anime publishers in the US. If you're gonna see that as ADV bias, fine.

Quote:
You shouldn't be so quick to throw stones when you yourself were in a large glass building.


Sure, I think Newtype has taken its fair share of criticism over the years. I've never shied away from listening to it and I've participated on this forum and AOD plenty to try and explain why things were the way they were.
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Greed1914
It's Over 9000!It's Over 9000!


Joined: 28 Oct 2007
Posts: 3311
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:53 am Reply with quote
FullmetalCJ wrote:
HSaabedra wrote:
I find it funny if a bit disconcerting that a former ADV employee would lash out at their former competitor because it serves to feed into the perception that the company as a whole lacked the business sense and professionalism expected of people working for a large corporate entity.


So an Otaku USA employee hopping on a topic about PiQ (without prefacing their comments with the nugget that they work for OUSA) to promote their magazine...that's professional. *shrug*

Quote:
The fact that you and your team never even attempted to address the flaws in your DVD review policies is proof enough that a lot of people disliked the magazine because of it, and it strikes me even stranger that you kept dodging the issue after being called on it many times on another forum I frequent on top of never really working to change the perception of the magazine as a mouthpiece for ADV.


Which flaw are you referring to? That we never trashed anything? I think I've addressed this plenty and certainly never shied away from talking about it. Newtype USA was modeled after the tone/voice of the Japanese magazine. Show me where Newtype Japan has torn a DVD/show/manga a new one. They haven't. The magazine (like many other anime magazines in Japan) is mostly promotional in nature, meant as a buyer's guide/catalog to guide you to releases you might like. It's a fan book, a catalog, a TV Guide kind of resource to new releases -- more informative in nature with a heavy focus on art. That's what Newtype USA was. What were you expecting exactly?

Also, regarding being a mouthpiece for ADV. I dunno how much more I can say it but we tried to cover EVERYONE's titles as equally as humanly possible. Even Viz, who was wholly uncooperative in terms of allowing us to properly cover their titles. We found a way to fit them in. And we didn't have to. It often took teeth-pulling or finding alternate means of covering their titles. But certainly, there was no way Newtype could've existed without covering ADV's titles just as equally as anyone else's. After all, they were (maybe not now) one of the biggest anime publishers in the US. If you're gonna see that as ADV bias, fine.

Quote:
You shouldn't be so quick to throw stones when you yourself were in a large glass building.


Sure, I think Newtype has taken its fair share of criticism over the years. I've never shied away from listening to it and I've participated on this forum and AOD plenty to try and explain why things were the way they were.



I for one am glad that you've participated so much on this topic. It's good to get some actual information instead of speculation out of a board every so often.
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Espeon



Joined: 09 Apr 2004
Posts: 105
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:59 am Reply with quote
I loved Newtype USA it had more interesting things in it then the other mags, Also stuff abuot show's been show in japan. Extra's like a poster and a DVD is a god send.

You will be missed Newtype USA.
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