On April 29 2016, the famous US publisher Harris Publications has shut down its publishing activities. The main reason behind such a decision seems to be the ever growing competition coming from the online publishing world.
"Harris Publications Inc. was one of the (US) nation’s largest special interest media companies operating over 75 brands with print, digital, mobile and live event platforms. It has produced magazines that educate, entertain, inform and inspire. Subject matters span an array of interests including decorating, gardening, beauty, automotive, sports, outdoor living, history, tactical, entertainment and wellness. Harris shut the company down on April 29, 2016".
This is the way Wikipedia, the popular online Free Encyclopedia, refers to the end of Harris Publications activities.
The New York based (Broadway) Harris Publications company has been in the publishing market since 1977. The company statement reads this way:
"It is with great sadness that we are announcing the closing of Harris Publications. For nearly 40 years, Harris Publications has been a mainstay in enthusiast publishing.
We are extremely grateful for the tremendous contributions of our employees, past and present. The hard work and dedication of our creative, sales, circulation and operations teams and the talents of our freelance editors, writers, photographers and designers are what allowed us to continue delivering thoughtful and beautiful magazines to our readers.
The magazine publishing industry has been through turmoil in the face of the rapid ascendance of digital media, changing consumer content preferences, magazine wholesaler struggles and consolidation in the supply chain. We have tried mightily to persevere against these forces, but have been unable to overcome these challenges."
Independently from the real reasons that causes things like this, the loss of an important publisher is a great loss for all of us, because an important source of information sustaining the passions of many gun enthusyasts and shooters does not exists anymore. Anyway, up to now it is not completely clear if any of the existing titles from Harris Publications will still continue to be printed, under some other publisher.
But yes, the print magazine industry is sufferyng heavy losses all over the World, due to the incresing dominant role that the digital media, the WEB first, have gained along the last years.
The most common popular assumption pretends to explain the print media problems with the simple statement "because the web is free", but the reasons behind the progressive loss of strenght from the print magazines are far more related to a substantial set of changes that have hit many of our basic behaviours in respect to the way all of us search and obtain the information we need, regadless if for business or entertainment reasons. But yes, for sure, in all this process the WEB has played an important role in recent years.
All we can hope and wish is to see the birth and growth of a new generation of web-based, digital media containers, providing quality contents able to stand out an often quite messy Internet World, were whoever is able to talk about everything, sometimes without knowing nothing.
Read also this interesting article from Guns Holsters And Gear, helping to reason about this phenomenon, without surprising too much about it. But most of all, learning to identify what is good from what is bad, taking advantage of the positive aspects the WEB can provide all of us.