84 of 86 people found the following review helpful
An Ideal Magazine for the Kindle,
This review is from: The Spectator (Kindle Edition)Face it, in its current form the Kindle is never going to be a great platform for reading most magazines. You certainly wouldn't dream of reading any publication where one of the main selling points is its photographic content. I can't see Vogue, Hello, National Geographic or Homes & Gardens ever taking off on device which can only offer black and white, e-ink facsimiles of photographs. Even publications that are less reliant on imagery are going to be a hard sell on the Kindle. One of the pleasures of picking up most magazines is the combination of words and pictures; in fact the content of many magazines simply wouldn't pass muster without the images that accompany the text.
There are however, a few exceptions to this rule and The Spectator is one of them. If any magazine came ready made to be read on the Kindle then its 'The Speccy'. Beyond a handful of cartoons and the odd image of an artwork, the only pictures in the print version of the magazine are found in advertisments. Since the latter are omitted from the Kindle version very little is lost in the conversion from printed page to e-ink.
The articles, as they're never intended to rely on the support of images or graphics and which are unchanged from the print version, lose none of their impact on the Kindle. The straightfoward layout of the printed magazine (i.e. articles following each other consecutively with very few breaks or sidebars) also lends itself to easy conversion to the Kindle.
There is the odd niggle about formatting. 'Spectator Notes' and the 'Diary' for example, could both do with the insertion of blank lines to delineate between sections. On the whole however, each edition (and I've subscribed for nearly two months now) scans smoothly once you get used to some slight rejigging in the running order of articles compared to the printed version.
Some readers may miss the cartoons. Personally I always found them to be a mixed bag and I'm not that sorry to see them left out, but equally I can't see why they have neen omitted. As they're nearly all small, pen and ink and black and white efforts they should translate easily to e-ink. There may be copywrite issues at work but whatever the reason its a bit of poor showing to leave them out entirely.
If you're not a fan of politics, finance or reasonably high-brow arts coverage then The Spectator, whether printed or electronic, will probably not appeal. The same applies if you're not keen on reading content predominantly written from a right of centre perspective. If however, you want some thoughtful writing on UK politics, society and the arts and you want it delivered to you weekly where ever you are in the world then The Spectator on the Kindle pretty much ticks every box. At £ 2.99 per month, advert free, its pretty decent value too.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Apr 2011 08:49:00 BDT
Mrs. A. J. Shingler says:
A very astute review. Thank you.
Posted on 3 Aug 2011 21:26:27 BDT
Pete J Garbett says:
I cannot thank you enough for the unwitting tip-off!
Bought my Kindle today. Gob-smacked with Kindle, but disappointed with magazine and newspaper costs. I thought the monthly subscription figures were the annual ones!
I agree with you about photographs and adverts. But The Spectator without cartoons????
I won't be subscribing. I thank you again for the tip-off.
Posted on 21 Oct 2011 19:32:16 BDT
Richard Calhoun says:
Thanks for the review, I have decided to buy my kindle now, and join up to the speccie.
In reply to an earlier post on 20 Dec 2012 09:47:47 GMT
Shaeffer (pen name) says:
I can assure Mr Garbett that the kindle's Spectator now includes the cartoons and many of the photos and illustrations from the print edition. At a fraction of the price of the print edition a subscription is, for me, a no-brainer.
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