Bob Webber <no17@...>
Ah, Pat, you missed my point then and continue to miss it now. Likely on purpose.
On the other hand, the reason that magazines and even more so Yahoo groups are losing their hold is Balkanization. Take a moment to add up all of the pages of magazines that come to print in a quarter. Some most of us rarely look at (an example was made of the N scale articles). Heck, there's 3 or more lists just for Sn3 - no telling how many for On30 - for all NG interests, there are likely 50 or more lists. Multiply that by many more when it comes to SG. Even our moderator isn't moderate in this regard as he offers to draw up another list about once a month (which though sounding critical to one person, isn't meant to be). How many modelers' lists are there? If you add up each one related to a specific road (AT&SF has at least 3, maybe more), region, or weather spot, you end up with a hell of a lot of lists - and there is even some likelihood that something in one or two of those lists might be of interest to you.
In terms of the Rio Grande, people want to separate steam from diesel, freight from passenger, narrow gauge from standard gauge, etc. And that's on a relatively small line. Same thing happens with other railroads, just differently. How many branch lines or divisions of the Santa Fe have their own list? So, you have a question pertaining to traffic of one sort or the other or even something of <gasp> history and research - and the end result is that the data is so compartmentalized that it becomes nearly useless for the larger interest. Then there are the "tweener" subjects that get asked on one list (for instance, express or baggage on this one) and those on, say the passenger car list don't (typically) see the benefit. Unless you want to be drowned by endless discussions on where to get lead every 4 months on all lists, you have to either pick and choose or go to digests and hope the digestion is comprehensive enough not to miss something useful.
So again, look at how many pages of modeling are available per quarter. Or, perhaps better stated, how many pages of modeling with research and historical references. The serious ones are going to attempt to keep their heads above water by being more specific in their purchases. Then when you have the majors attempting to fill all sails, it just isn't possible. So they typically, except in exceptional cases, fail. Wooden trains for the Christmas Tree? Yeah, some reach there for a serious magazine, but they have to use something. Cutting articles out and filing them and throwing the rest of the magazine away? i can recall several variations of that theme, and they didn't require pages to explain it. So it isn't surprising that MR & RMC isn't meeting the need - or MM is not doing as well as it might (the stance on the UP issue didn't help, though as one of the only ones to say it out loud, it was a brave thing to do). Nor is it surprising that Martin's meetings don't have huge populations (and thank Glub for that). How many conventions, seminars, shows, etc. can you go to? How many are there? Again, Balkinization has fragmented the community such that only special interests thrive within a small population.
Then again... the 2004 NG convention outdrew the NMRA convention. One was a professional show put on by professionals, the other.. wasn't. Hardly fair comparison, though the numbers have been steadily closing. But that is one "specially" against the polyglot.
At 09:56 PM 12/21/2005, STMFC@... wrote:
Message: 25Bob Webber