We want to share a letter from one of our readers because we think her concerns about Horse Journal Online are shared by many people.
Our reader writes:
I was saddened to receive the news that Horse Journal would no longer be printed. I had gotten to the point where HJ was the only publication I still received because I am just too busy to read magazines. But I always looked forward to sitting down with my HJ.
At least some version is available online. But I am really not a blog type. Are there any plans to download current “issues” in the previous format?
Perhaps it is no longer necessary, but all these (20?) years I have kept my copies on file for reference. I don’t really understand the new format. I guess I am reluctant to change, as I like it the way it was.
Any insight you could share would be much appreciated. I know you are very busy to respond to one person, but if you can offer me insight, I would be much obliged.
Horse Journal Response:
To help with the change from paper to a website subscription and ensure you receive maximum benefit, we are compiling one PDF at the end of each month with everything we uploaded during that month.
With this PDF, readers can see what they may have missed, and they can print out individual stories from the PDF. Here is the link for March 2014. You can print only what you want. For example, if you only want to read “Zipper Riding Boot Care,” you can just print out page 13 rather than all 39 pages.
We realize our change from print to a subscriber-only online digital resource was an adjustment for some of our readers. The majority, though, were pleased. Like you, they didn't have time (or energy at the end of the day!) to read all the magazines stacked by their chair. We're right with you!
We also noticed that when most people today want to make a purchase, they look for material on the Internet for advice. And we realized it's pretty tough to find a site you can trust with unbiased commentary. We wanted to fill that niche.
Our digital format allows readers to quickly research purchases and veterinary articles. We keep you posted on what's new (daily! not monthly!). You can take time to simply read the material your interested in. The bimonthly newsletter keeps you informed of newly uploaded material. We also update Twitter and Facebook daily.
Dropping paper allows us to offer our readers more, with bigger, better, fresh content. New product trials, updated articles, videos and more – the most value we can offer for your subscription fee. All major stories also have a downloadable PDF link with them, so you can print and file the stories, if you prefer.
We also compiled the entire month of blogs in a second month-end PDF that you can download or browse through. We know a lot of people don’t want to bother with blogs. But that’s because, with few exceptions, the word “blog” has become associated with rambling diaries of some stranger’s life. Not with Horse Journal Online.
The postings you see in our writers’ blogs are actually the former Editorials, Commentaries and Veterinary Viewpoints we published each month in the old Horse Journal print. Just as with my editorials, my blogs discuss what I think horse owners should consider in their own barns, current trends, breaking news and more.
Dr. Grant Miller, one of our Veterinary Editors, has been scoping out things his clients are using that our readers might like to hear more about, including Fodder Systems and VibraPlates. That doesn't mean we won't tackle them at one point or another, but it keeps things fresh. And we love feedback, as it helps us develop our articles, too. Let Dr. Miller know what you’re up against!
Our other Veterinary Editor, Dr. Deb M. Eldredge, shows in her blogs why she's a national multi award-winning writer and book author. Her blog is informative with a witty look at life on the farm, like her discussion about shedding. Let Dr. Eldredge know what you’re wondering about. She recently helped a horse owner with a goat problem!
Performance Editor John Strassburger, an eventing trainer in California, concentrates on training, performance, competition and controversial issues. John will keep you informed and on your toes, and he’ll tackle your training problems and offer advice, such as how hard to work your horse.
Associate Editor Margaret Freeman, a USEF judge and FEI-level dressage competitor, focuses on the horsey life and dressage. Her equestrian background is multi-discipline, and her journalism background is strong. She's discussed amusing anecdotes like "orange horses," to keeping your cell phone charged during a long day at the barn. Like John, Margaret can help with training, performance – anything horse related. All you need to do is ask.
I tell readers to never hesitate to ask for something, whether it’s an article you’d like to see, one you can’t find or something you particularly liked or didn’t like. We work for you.
Horse Journal has always prided itself on a personal touch with our readers. And, just because we’re growing, evolving and still leading the pack, that doesn’t mean we are going to lose touch with what’s most important to us: our readers. Thank you for making us what we are today!