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


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HSaabedra



Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 18
Location: Fort Worth, TX
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 1:02 am Reply with quote
Quote:
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*


At least he didn't go off on a needless tangent and start attacking people for no reason. You should know better than that and it speaks volumes about the ability to function in a professional capacity.

I would have been happy to offer you a position as an Associate Editor for the publishing network I work for, but I'm having second thoughts after that outburst.

Quote:
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.


You kept dodging the issue when you were submitting responses in a Newtype related thread on the AnimeNation Forums not too long ago and you still keep doing it for whatever reason known only to yourself.

Quote:
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?


A magazine with an editorial staff that actually knew what the job entails when it comes to conducting a review. I along with others weren't looking for thrashing, but we didn't want a carbon copy of the Japanese magazine either.

Quote:
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.


That still doesn't explain the oversight of obvious flaws in some titles with the overexposure of others.

Quote:
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.


The problem is the fact that the reviews weren't reviews at all but read as thinly-veiled advertisements for upcoming shows.

Quote:
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.


You're not doing a very good job of either frankly and I hope you can learn to deal with your issues against Otaku USA since you seem to hold a grudge against their staff for no reason at all.
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Zac
ANN Executive Editor


Joined: 05 Jan 2002
Posts: 7830
Location: Anime News Network Technodrome
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 1:10 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:

I would have been happy to offer you a position as an Associate Editor for the publishing network I work for, but I'm having second thoughts after that outburst.


Knowing what I know about FullmetalCJ, I don't think he needs any sort of job offer from you, but congrats on achieving a new level of ignorant, self-serving condescension which frankly is extremely embarrassing for you if you do actually work for a publisher and are abusing your position like this to chastise strangers on the internet.
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HSaabedra



Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 18
Location: Fort Worth, TX
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 2:48 am Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
Knowing what I know about FullmetalCJ, I don't think he needs any sort of job offer from you, but congrats on achieving a new level of ignorant, self-serving condescension which frankly is extremely embarrassing for you if you do actually work for a publisher and are abusing your position like this to chastise strangers on the internet.


It isn't anything that you describe unless you think attacking people that had nothing to do with the loss of employment is somehow more appropriate instead of taking the necessary measures to address the issue without resorting to such actions in the first place.

He could have ignored Jeff's comment and simply went on to explain what happened, but he chose to take the path that would garner him the most sympathy and attention instead of being the better man and leaving out his issues with Otaku USA.

Be that as it may, I am operating well within the rules and anyone that sees the rant would be in total agreement with me in regards to my criticism of Chris Johnston because he went from the same condescending self-serving mouthpiece that you claim I am to a bitter disgruntled former employee that had the rug pulled from under him and is now seeking anyone's attention in order to sell a story.

I would think staff here would discourage such conduct to begin with, but I see that isn't the case and would rather allow people to "stir the pot" instead of focusing on the root of the problem which had nothing to do with Jeff from Otaku USA and everything to do with the lack of firm direction within NewType on top of poor management and constant revisions regarding content that led to declining sales.
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Big Hed



Joined: 04 May 2006
Posts: 1607
Location: Melbourne, Australia
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 2:52 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:

At least he didn't go off on a needless tangent and start attacking people for no reason. You should know better than that and it speaks volumes about the ability to function in a professional capacity.
...
You're not doing a very good job of either frankly and I hope you can learn to deal with your issues against Otaku USA since you seem to hold a grudge against their staff for no reason at all.


Actually, I think FullmetalCJ made quite clear his reasons for attacking OtakuUSA: he felt that the magazine was a ripoff of NewtypeUSA. Given this, I think FullmetalCJ was entitled to his words, as he himself said.

Quote:

I would have been happy to offer you a position as an Associate Editor for the publishing network I work for, but I'm having second thoughts after that outburst.


To echo Zac; the above really has no place in this thread in my opinion, and only serves to diminish your credibility, even if you indeed do work for a publishing company.

Quote:
That still doesn't explain the oversight of obvious flaws in some titles with the overexposure of others.


I'm not sure I understand what you are trying to say here, but I assume you mean some titles received more coverage than others. To that I say, such is life. NewtypeUSA's coverage gave substantial page space to titles which ADV hadn't licensed; however, not all of these are going to get equal exposure, and it is unfair to say that some of ADV's titles should not be given the spotlight -- there are only so many pages in a magazine.

Quote:
The problem is the fact that the reviews weren't reviews at all but read as thinly-veiled advertisements for upcoming shows.


Well, given that FullmetalCJ said that NTUSA was modeled after the magazine's Japanese counterpart, and that all titles reviewed by NTUSA were given similar treatment, this point is moot.

Quote:
He could have ignored Jeff's comment and simply went on to explain what happened, but he chose to take the path that would garner him the most sympathy and attention instead of being the better man and leaving out his issues with Otaku USA.

Be that as it may, I am operating well within the rules and anyone that sees the rant would be in total agreement with me in regards to my criticism of Chris Johnston because he went from the same condescending self-serving mouthpiece that you claim I am to a bitter disgruntled former employee that had the rug pulled from under him and is now seeking anyone's attention in order to sell a story.


Again, I don't think you're going to gain anybody's approval with comments of this nature, HSaabedra. You are employing the same personal attacks upon which your criticisms of FullmetalCJ are based.
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Zac
ANN Executive Editor


Joined: 05 Jan 2002
Posts: 7830
Location: Anime News Network Technodrome
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 3:04 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:

Be that as it may, I am operating well within the rules and anyone that sees the rant would be in total agreement with me in regards to my criticism of Chris Johnston because he went from the same condescending self-serving mouthpiece that you claim I am to a bitter disgruntled former employee that had the rug pulled from under him and is now seeking anyone's attention in order to sell a story.


Or maybe you don't actually know the whole story here and are speculating wildly without any real knowledge, assuming that his career ended when he left Newtype rather than just someone who feels liberated enough to tell what he feels is the truth about his former employer. I guess one is easier to believe than the other if you have absolutely no information and are handing down an uninformed opinion without anything to back it up.

Quote:

I would think staff here would discourage such conduct to begin with, but I see that isn't the case and would rather allow people to "stir the pot" instead of focusing on the root of the problem which had nothing to do with Jeff from Otaku USA and everything to do with the lack of firm direction within NewType on top of poor management and constant revisions regarding content that led to declining sales.


Again, this endless "Looking down my nose at you plebeians who do things I don't approve of" attitude comes from a guy who chose this:



As his avatar.

"Hmmm yes, these huge anime breasts will prove my points and make everyone take me seriously"

Way to go.
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Hon'ya-chan



Joined: 31 Jul 2007
Posts: 973
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 6:04 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:
I would think staff here would discourage such conduct to begin with, but I see that isn't the case and would rather allow people to "stir the pot" instead of focusing on the root of the problem which had nothing to do with Jeff from Otaku USA and everything to do with the lack of firm direction within NewType on top of poor management and constant revisions regarding content that led to declining sales.


Thanks, we try our best to rile up others into pointless shenanigans that result in thread closures.
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HSaabedra



Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 18
Location: Fort Worth, TX
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 8:21 am Reply with quote
Big Hed wrote:
Actually, I think FullmetalCJ made quite clear his reasons for attacking OtakuUSA: he felt that the magazine was a ripoff of NewtypeUSA. Given this, I think FullmetalCJ was entitled to his words, as he himself said.


Given the reasons for the tangent why wasn't Chris able to make the format that he claims Otaku USA so blatantly ripped off from NTUSA work to begin with and why is Otaku USA cheaper?

Quote:
To echo Zac; the above really has no place in this thread in my opinion, and only serves to diminish your credibility, even if you indeed do work for a publishing company.


I never was looking for credibility to begin with, since I was making an observation and I was throwing that out there to see if he would take the bait.

Quote:
I'm not sure I understand what you are trying to say here, but I assume you mean some titles received more coverage than others. To that I say, such is life. NewtypeUSA's coverage gave substantial page space to titles which ADV hadn't licensed; however, not all of these are going to get equal exposure, and it is unfair to say that some of ADV's titles should not be given the spotlight -- there are only so many pages in a magazine.


I was referring to the fact that there was no real criticism involved in any review and that the reviews in general were treated as an afterthought, be it for anime, manga, or video games

Quote:
Again, I don't think you're going to gain anybody's approval with comments of this nature, HSaabedra. You are employing the same personal attacks upon which your criticisms of FullmetalCJ are based.


Since when was calling someone out on their actions a personal attack? A personal attack would be something along the lines of insulting his character or his ability to do his job. I'm not criticizing him directly but I am criticizing his actions as another professional would.
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HSaabedra



Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 18
Location: Fort Worth, TX
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 8:29 am Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
Or maybe you don't actually know the whole story here and are speculating wildly without any real knowledge, assuming that his career ended when he left Newtype rather than just someone who feels liberated enough to tell what he feels is the truth about his former employer. I guess one is easier to believe than the other if you have absolutely no information and are handing down an uninformed opinion without anything to back it up.


Being that he's not done much else of note since then and was never really happy from what people at ADV told me directly, I would figure that part ended and he would move on to something else. I am not as uninformed as you make me out to be, but neither am I foolish enough to reach wildly to conclusions as the staff seems to enjoy doing.

I can only draw the most logical conclusion from the information presented to me and can add no more and no less. You would be wise in doing the same, Zac

Quote:

I would think staff here would discourage such conduct to begin with, but I see that isn't the case and would rather allow people to "stir the pot" instead of focusing on the root of the problem which had nothing to do with Jeff from Otaku USA and everything to do with the lack of firm direction within NewType on top of poor management and constant revisions regarding content that led to declining sales.


Quote:
Again, this endless "Looking down my nose at you plebeians who do things I don't approve of" attitude comes from a guy who chose this:



As his avatar.

"Hmmm yes, these huge anime breasts will prove my points and make everyone take me seriously"

Way to go.


So instead of addressing any of my points directly, you choose to instead criticize my choice of avatar? I think I'm done here.
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jeffk



Joined: 26 Jun 2008
Posts: 4
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 9:48 am Reply with quote
Sorry if I upset anyone, I just saw some speculation that I could perhaps help make clearer. I didn’t feel that I overly hyped OUSA or degraded either PiQ or NTUSA and certainly didn’t hide with a fake moniker (notice OUSA Pusher under my name). (oops, that's on another forum but it is listed as my occupation here)

Yes I am Jeff Kight, Advertising Director for Sovereign Media, publisher of Otaku USA Sci Fi, Realms of Fantasy, WW II History & Military Heritage. Our company has launched nearly 30 magazines in its history and has more coming.

That’s not meant to be spam for the company rather info showing that we are a magazine publishing company and know a bit about the industry.

Magazine publishing is a business we try to produce a product that people will enjoy and purchase. Some people will enjoy AI, OUSA, PA or Giant Robot (I enjoy GR a great deal) and others will not. Some loved Newtype USA and some loved PiQ…others did not. That’s life.

As I said, I believe had PiQ been launched on it's own, without a connection to NTUSA it may have made it. It looked nice, felt good and may have found a life among the other entertainment pubs.


Last edited by jeffk on Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:10 am; edited 1 time in total
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Zac
ANN Executive Editor


Joined: 05 Jan 2002
Posts: 7830
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:35 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:
I think I'm done here.


Mission accomplished!
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FullmetalCJ
Industry Insider


Joined: 10 Aug 2004
Posts: 62
Location: Atlanta, GA
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:56 am Reply with quote
HSaabedra wrote:
You kept dodging the issue when you were submitting responses in a Newtype related thread on the AnimeNation Forums not too long ago and you still keep doing it for whatever reason known only to yourself.


? What issue have I been dodging? I just addressed the two biggest criticisms of NTUSA -- positive reviews and the ADV bias issues. You didn't even ask me a question and I answered. Smile

HSaabedra wrote:
A magazine with an editorial staff that actually knew what the job entails when it comes to conducting a review. I along with others weren't looking for thrashing, but we didn't want a carbon copy of the Japanese magazine either.


By its design, Newtype USA was always meant to be an adaptation of the Japanese magazine. That addresses a lot of your other statements since NTJ is mostly positive/promotional and that's what we were matching.

HSaabedra wrote:
Given the reasons for the tangent why wasn't Chris able to make the format that he claims Otaku USA so blatantly ripped off from NTUSA work to begin with and why is Otaku USA cheaper?


It wasn't that NTUSA 'failed.' In fact, the magazine was quite successful. The formula we had did work (if it didn't maybe Otaku USA wouldn't have copied it so closely). What didn't work was that ADV was running the business. They're not a publishing company, and they'd signed a horrifyingly bad contract with Kadokawa that was very unfavorable to them and prevented the magazine from growing past a certain point like a normal US-published magazine could've. I'd worked in publishing for 8 years prior to joining Newtype, and it sucked royally to know we could've grown even more but were tied down by what ADV had agreed to. Also, keep in mind NTUSA was a *licensed* magazine so it had to deal with issues that OUSA doesn't (like licensing fees), not to mention OUSA is smaller, on different quality paper, doesn't need a full-time translation staff, didn't have an exclusively licensed serialized manga (by, for example, CLAMP), etc. etc. NTUSA was a very expensive magazine to produce (by contract).

When comparing our $12.95 price tag, I'd say look at any video game magazine that came with a disc (also dealing with licensing fees, though probably more favorable). You're lookin' at a $9.99 cover price for a magazine that might even be less than 100 pages, on tissue paper. Then you look at Newtype -- I believe we were 160 pages consistently every month, on really nice paper, in a large saddle-stitched format, and we came with a disc for $3 more than that. Paper and postage ain't cheap.

HSaabedra wrote:
Being that he's not done much else of note since then and was never really happy from what people at ADV told me directly, I would figure that part ended and he would move on to something else. I am not as uninformed as you make me out to be, but neither am I foolish enough to reach wildly to conclusions as the staff seems to enjoy doing.


I gotta say, I loved working at Newtype USA and was very happy there (until the pay cuts and uncertainty with ADV began). So I dunno who you heard that from, but...they're wrong. I love publishing, and I'm always gonna be a magazine editor at heart. Personally, I'd always wanted a magazine like NTUSA -- translated from Japan, localized for the US with high production values. I'm a huge anime fan and was nothing but proud of the magazine we produced. When I left for another, unrelated job (which was *right* before Kadokawa pulled the license) I'd hoped it would be able to survive through ADV's struggles or that Kadokawa would see fit to do it directly. They certainly had the opportunity and staff ready to go.
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samuelp



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 2098
Location: San Antonio, USA
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:25 pm Reply with quote
So to summarize, Newtype couldn't ever truly succeed because it was never actually an independent publication, and it couldn't _by construction_ adapt to the changing market in which it was published.
Whether that meant providing substantive reviews or growing it's scope and/or readership in ways the original Japanese publication didn't, or any other innovation, it was prevented by contract and controller from doing so.

PiQ failed for 2 giant reasons, 1. insufficient financial support and time from parent company, and 2. a completely wrong assumption that the newtype readership base would be happy with a magazine aimed at a much wider geek interest audience.

The fact is, Otaku USA still exists because it has flexibility that Newtype didn't. Comparing the quality of the two magazines is quite moot at this point, since one is available and the other is long gone.

Sometimes quality products and hard work doesn't make a damn bit of difference in this capitalist word of ours... It's a shame.
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lazyowl



Joined: 05 Feb 2008
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:57 pm Reply with quote
VIPPER. wrote:
Otaku USA is actually good since its writers have opinions, unlike the Newtype USA robots.

It might be true to a certain extent, but it's also true that the NTUSA readers were mentally-mature, independent thinkers who could make their own decisions based on opinion-free articles.

FullmetalCJ wrote:
I gotta say, I loved working at Newtype USA and was very happy there

Ditto.
FullmetalCJ wrote:
(until the pay cuts and uncertainty with ADV began)

Shhh, you're not supposed to say that!Wink

-H
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Kabuto Tokugawa



Joined: 09 Mar 2008
Posts: 63
PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 1:33 am Reply with quote
Quote:
Freelancers Report that PiQ's July Issue Is Its Last (Update 2)


I can't say I didn't see this coming.
I felt that PiQ was 'dead on arrival' the day I took the first issue from my mail box and went WTF is this?

The Dear NewtypeUSA Subscriber letter by Gary Steinman in the first issue didn't help ease the former NTUSA fans into the new mag.
Whether it was supposed to be sent with the magazine or not is irrelevant. What matters is that it was sent and it made the claim that PiQ was "everything you've enjoyed from NewtypeUSA...and much more!"
PiQ was not even close, IMHO.

Let me add that I LOVED NTUSA so Chris J, and all of you that put your blood, sweat and tears into that magazine I say Thank you very much. I for one appreciated all the hard work and effort you put into that publication that was NewtypeUSA. You have my condolences for Kadokawa pulling the plug on you and your fellow NewtypeUSA staffers.

However, PiQ is an entirely different matter altogether. It was a total disaster from an Otaku's viewpoint.
I don't know who made the decision to try and branch out away from anime, or why, and it doesn't matter any more. The evidence is clear that it was a really bad idea to try and market a non-anime magazine to the kinds of anime fans that would shell out $100.00/yr for a magazine subscription. That alone should have been enough evidence to make it crystal clear that the fans of NTUSA wanted anime and anime only for the cash they were putting out.

I've seen people here criticize OtakuUSA for being a rip-off of NTUSA. I agree that it is, and that's why I like it. Especially now that NTUSA is gone.

Let me be the first here to say that if PiQ had been another rip-off of NTUSA or Animerica, or Animag, or heck even Protoculture Addicts; I, (and from all the Otaku I've spoken too over the last three months), and others would have purchased it; never bad mouthed it; and would have been happy with it.

The second issue of PiQ was much better than the first and had raised my hopes that the magazine would improve. But the third issue strayed too far from anime and the fourth was just horrible.
"Wall-E" on the front cover? Really? I'd take Naruto or Bleach or Death Note any day over a Pixar character. I'm Otaku, it's what I want out of a magazine I'm willing to pay a high subscription price for.

In retrospect, I believe that PiQ might have done better if two things had been done prior to its launch;

1) A full refund of the NTUSA subscribers money with the option to purchase PiQ if they wanted it.

2) PiQ was luanched as a non-anime, completely independent magazine publication with no ties to the former NTUSA fan base outside of those that actually wanted the magazine.

I can't say that the PiQ staff weren't warned by their former NTUSA fans. We tried to tell you we weren't happy with what was being published with our NTUSA subscription money, I know I did.
Oh well...C'est la vie.
Best of luck next time. Smile

-KT
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Kireek



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 274
PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 2:34 pm Reply with quote
So no refunds then............great i know some1 who spent 90 dollars on a subscription only to have newtype pulled out 2 months later.
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