impossible for as long as it could.
Yet, consider this. We also always
have been a digital publication, starting
with the first CD digest of issues in
1994. And, digital publishing has done
nothing but grow from the beginning.
So has advertising in the digital realm,
which is inherently limitless.
Something else also has started to
happen in digital publishing. It has
become easier, and more acceptable,
for people to pay for goods that also are
available for free. There has been much
experimentation here, and we are among
the many doing the experimenting. One
advantage for us is that we’ve always
had paying subscribers. Maybe it’s crazy
to think they’ll stick with us after we go
all-digital. But, I don’t think so. I’m a big
believer in the willingness of people to
pay for value, provided the means are
there. We have some means today, and
we will have better ones tomorrow,
especially if you help us think those
through—while also helping us improve
our editorial methods and materials.
Every magazine has a periodical
heartbeat. Ours always has been monthly.
That won’t change. What will change is
how much time passes between what
we write and when it appears. A production cycle that took several months
will now take just weeks. (So for this
issue, I am writing this on August 1st
for a September publication date.) Much
FROM THE EDITOR
more of our stuff will be current, or as
close to now as we can get.
We always will remain a print publication at heart (and in that respect, we will
be no different from the rest of journalism), but we won’t remain contained by
the print medium. That medium, where
nearly all of our contributors grew up,
has legacy values (fairness, transparency,
credit to sources and so on) that are
important to bring to a vast new world
that has too little of them. Again, we
expect you to help us with that.
Linux Journal always has been a publication for the Linux Community. Linux
Journal will now be a publication by the
Linux Community as well. This is a very
good thing. Here in the digital world,
connection between people and ideas
are much more direct and immediate.
Understandings are also easily iterated
and improved. Just like code.
Maybe Linux doesn’t need Linux
Journal—or anything, other than continued constructive hacking in kernel
space. But I do believe Linux has been
better with Linux Journal around than it
would have been without it. Therefore,
with Linux Journal in a much more
improve-able place, we can’t help but
make Linux better in the process.;
Doc Searls is Senior Editor of Linux Journal. He is also a fellow
with the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard
University and the Center for Information Technology and Society
at UC Santa Barbara.