I am sitting in Border’s right now. Having done my usual perusing through the magazine section and I have to ask myself, “why do I like magazines?”
Is it the covers? The chances that some companies take, or thte moments that are otherwise settled in simple arrangements of print and type?
Part of it is indeed the writing. I have to admit that I like those pieces that can take me from an imagined answer to something totally different and self-shattering.
Or, is it the feeling that these magazines which they are trying to be permanent, but really are just moments that will pass with the next issue.
Or, could it be the arrangements. I say often that people can figure out the people who live around there and shop at stores based on the magazines that are on the rack. Kind of a generalization, but i’ve really seen this bear more true than false.
The subjects present are similar. There may be different entry points, but all have this common goal – we sell an idea as a product, and want you to be as emotionally invested into it as we who published it are.
And yet, its not the same when I take the method of reading and try to repeat that in mobile. There’s just as much attention paid to content, but not to immersing the reader into the subject. Sure, you get pictures and text only in a magazine, designed around the behavior-perception that there is something worthwhile once you turn the page. But, this isn’t the same in digital. Magazines all seem to lose that ability to find the idea presented, due to the nature of mice, apps, links, and every ad that wants to have a part of your attention too.
And yes, I find myself going back into the Wired app on my iPad because there is something in the one issue that I purchased that feels like a magazine, and different all the same. I slide pages, instead of turning them. I click on interactive content, and sometimes a click does nothing at all. The text doesn’t move, but the content is written in a way that it wishes to move me to change my thinking, acting, actions, something. It is trying to make me do something permanent, and the cover will change there too once the month is over.
Is this what I like about magazines? Or, am I sitting in yet another moment, looking for a periodical to intentionally change my perceptions, until next issue, when I gather around these spaces again for another change?