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Future of Transit Australia Magazine

General Transport Discussion not specific to one state

Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby Admet75 » Thu Apr 19, 2018 11:47 am

http://www.transitaustralia.com.au/futureofta.pdf

As most of you are aware that for over 73 years Transit Australia has been part of the public transport movement writing news and articles for generations and some have become books in their own right- for example Rails to the Bay (Roger Wheaton) and Melbourne Tramways (the late David Keenan). It was started off by the then enthusiastic members of the Victorian Division of the Australian Electric Traction Association called Tram Tracks and this name stayed around till 1971 when it became known as Electric Traction (ET) and then 1987 to now became Transit Australia to make it known as the only public transport magazine that covered all public transport modes (including Monorail) in Australia.

Its business model I think set up by AETA VIC was simply to produce the magazine and publish books and the profits from the sale of books would offset the loss of the magazine. Hence the name Transit Australia Publishing who as everyone knows have published excellent well researched books in the past.

A couple of years ago it was decided that TAP would separate itself from publishing the magazine and it became Transit Australia Digital and it was available as a digital version and a 12 month subscription for those who wanted a hard copy and there are some who still get the hard copy and magazine distribution has been markedly cut back to reduce costs.

TAP still does publish books and in recent times new books have been coming out every one or two years.

However, like most magazines in Australia it might have a lot of interest but the interest is not matched with new fresh articles. The yoiunger ones are actually more interested in getting photos published in magazines but writing articles they find hard because they ask "what should I write about.

However, Transit Australia does need your help for it survive. Who knows what might happen if we don't have a public transport magazine anymore will anyone actually be willing to take on this full time role as editor.

I have written numerous articles and submitted photos in the past but I dont have a good command of the English language so it rules me out for putting my hand up as editor.

In short, if Transit Australia magazine doesn't find a new editor by the end of this year the magazine will simply be no more.
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Re: Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby Tonymercury » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:45 am

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Re: Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby tonyp » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:13 am

I was entertaining the thought of touring Australia and doing a roundup on all the new tram systems when they were fully running, which I thought would be this decade but now looks like 2020 thanks to NSW! I guess poor old TA won't last that long. All I can say is that there's one very appreciative and non-complaining reader here (who doesn't even mind it being late).
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Re: Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby Tonymercury » Fri Apr 20, 2018 9:40 am

I was hoping to drag it out until the opening of the CSELR, but that does seem very unlikely.
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Re: Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby Tim Williams » Thu May 10, 2018 1:54 pm

My comments aren't meant to be disrespectful or to minimise the effort that has been done with the fine magazine over the years, but with the size enthusiast population in this country(particularly those who supply photos and/or articles), would we not be better off overall if we publish a one only magaine that covers Buses and Trams (LRV's) for the whole country. I love the Australian Bus magazine, but in some ways it is a pity there are separate Victorian and Queensland (?) publications and well as maybe other tram/trolley magazines.

I am one of these people who buys bus, tram, rail and sometimes car magazines/publications - my transport interests are quite broad, so to have all local bus and tram info in one magazine would be great (for me and hopefully, a lot of others!!!)

Just my thoughts, that obviously will not be popular with those who put in their own time on all these separate publications.
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Re: Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby boronia » Thu May 10, 2018 2:30 pm

It would still come back to the problems of assembling material, editing it, getting it printed and distributed. The more you want to put in a magazine, the more time and effort you need to do it. Unless such a publication is capable of sustaining full time paid professional staff, it may have difficulty in surviving.
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Re: Future of Transit Australia Magazine

Postby Tim Williams » Thu May 10, 2018 3:14 pm

Its funny you suggest a full time paid person, because I was thinking about that, especially when you think about other transport magazines with their obviously larger circulations, such as Australian Aviation and all the UK Key Publishing magazines - Buses, Rail and Aviation mags, with their paid editorial people etc.

Pehaps one national bus and tram mag would gain sufficient subscriptions to support may be even a part time paid person - I admit this is a bit "pie in the sky" as I have no idea of potential circulations, costs of producing and distributing and so on. And then of course there is current threat/problem of the ever expanding digital. I just think the way thinks are at present, with all individual publications (all no doubt produced with voluntary labour) the market for these publications, that must be fairly small, is being fragmented.
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