The New Print Gimmick

first_imgDavid Granger likens print innovations to the new squeezable ketchup bottle, what he calls “the greatest consumer product in the history of mankind.” That little twist on the American staple “allows people to access it in a simple and fulfilling way.” The use of print innovations have yet to become as widespread as the ketchup bottle, but the new technologies are breathing fresh air into a mature industry that is battling its own digital counterparts for survival.“In this era, when everyone’s excited about new media, we need to do everything we can to make older media as exciting as possible,” says Granger, Esquire’s editor-in-chief. The magazine’s latest print gimmick was its May 2009 issue where it featured a mix-n-match cover. The facial features of President Obama, George Clooney and Justin Timberlake became interchangeable thanks to a tri-perforated cover.It’s not just the digital era, but also the poor economy that has publishers looking for new ways to stay viable. “The growth of the Internet as consumers’ primary news and content-delivery method, in combination with the impact of the recession on the publishing industry, has created a marketing environment that requires inventive and customizable cover and insert creative that will resonate with the consumer,” says Scott Berry, senior vice president of sales for specialty printer Vertis Communications.Print Innovations, Past and Present Four years ago, Rolling Stone made news with its 3-D lenticular cover for its 1,000th issue. Late last year, The Hollywood Reporter also produced a 3-D cover featuring the movie “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” for its November 30th issue. Some other recent covers include Esquire’s October 2008 e-ink issue, where it embedded an electronic paper device in the cover—a first for the magazine industry. Another Hearst publication, House Beautiful, featured a pocket cover with a pull-out for its September 2009 issue. The cover line asked, “What colors does your house need?” and the pull-out provided a sampling of colors with personality descriptions and suggestions for use.Hearst Corp. seems to be embracing print innovations. The company’s 2009 annual report is a panoply of print gimmicks, including digital bar codes, pop-ups and magazines within magazines, produced by Sandy Alexander and Brown Printing Co. And for the past three years, the company has held “print expos” where it invites printers to set up display booths to showcase their cutting-edge capabilities in an internal tradeshow setting for Hearst’s publishers, editors and marketing people. In January, Michael Clinton, executive vice president, chief marketing officer and publishing director for Hearst Magazines, decided to open the doors to invite advertisers and agencies to the expo.That was a smart move considering that producing these special issues usually requires advertiser buy-in. One of the reasons specialty print issues aren’t more commonplace is because they are more costly to produce. Granger notes that it wasn’t until the economy started to head south that advertisers got interested in collaborating on some print innovations. “I have no budget for increased cost so I need an advertiser to do it with,” he says. “Frankly, there are costs that need to be shared. That’s why we haven’t done more; we have to find advertisers that get excited about doing something, as well as committing on the edit side.”It should be noted that some of the best print innovations these days are showcased by advertising inserts. Take the magazine insert for Ubisoft’s Assassin Creed II, a video game. As you open the four-page spread, you actually tear off the head of the king, one of the characters in the game. “You can literally hear and feel the head tearing,” says Doug Hazlett, vice president of marketing and sustainability for specialty printer Sandy Alexander.A Jump In Newsstand SalesWhile specialty printing has been around for a while, new technologies coupled with publishers’ desire to stay relevant are leading to growth in this area of magazine publishing. “There are new techniques and technologies that are changing the business,” Hazlett says. “The advantage of specialty magazine printing is that it drives higher awareness, recall and in turn sales which drives a higher return on your investment.”The newsstand sales of Hearst’s specialty print magazines are proof. House Beautiful’s September 2009 issue, featuring the pocket cover, was the top selling issue of the year for the magazine with 110,000 copies sold—24 percent higher than the average issue. In fact, it was the best-selling issue since September 2007, says a Hearst Magazines spokesperson. And the newsstand sales of Esquire’s mix-n-match cover for May 2009 were up more than 10 percent. Esquire’s e-ink cover for its October 2008 issue saw a newsstand spike of more than 15 percent with a 33 percent price increase, according to the spokesperson.The payoff is also about generating buzz. “Great ideas and executions beget more great ideas and executions,” says Karen Wagner, production director for Hearst Magazines. “Not only do advertisers benefit from innovation, but so do editors and the editorial product.”Challenges and PricingWhile it’s difficult to get a good idea of just how much these specialty printing projects cost, Granger says that Esquire’s issues that were innovative through its use of paper and ink cost in the “tens of thousands of dollars,” noting that it was only a “slight upcharge” and not “cripplingly expensive.” And Hearst maintains that its 2009 annual report with all the bells and whistles did not cost any more to produce than a regular report. There are other challenges to producing specialty printed issues. The edit team, production staff, advertiser and printers must all be on the same page. Another challenge is the longer lead time. For example, a print unit that runs inside the magazine may take a week to two weeks to prepare, and can be produced earlier, but must be at the printer at the time of binding. And a specialty cover can’t close too early because of edit constraints, Wagner says. Esquire specialty covers have closed about 10 days earlier than regular covers, Granger says. He adds that time also has to be factored in to allow for the selling of the idea to an advertiser and for the manufacturing division to have enough time to order paper, etc. What’s Next: Thermo-Dynamic InkSome of the emerging trends and biggest bangs for the buck include the use of 2-D bar codes and anything interactive. The use of 3-D covers still generate a tremendous amount of interest and activity, especially given the advent of 3-D movies and TV, Hazlett says. Special coatings, like gloss UV and metal effects, unique stocks, special colors and custom pop-ups and die-cuts are hot now, he adds. “Inside the book, a unique stock, custom shape or special finish provide the highest awareness and recall for a marketing campaign,” he says.In addition, some of the updates to the actual presses have enabled many of these technologies. “There are so many different units that can be produced and bound, due to improvements to presses,” Wagner says. “We can do more on press in one pass than we could before. In the past, in some cases we’ve had to print a unit on press and then take it offline and do other things to it, like [die-cut] it, fold it or glue it. Now, the new technologies that printers have added to the presses enable them to do more of that inline,” saving time and money.Hearst’s Marie Claire has something special in the works for select copies of its March issue, Wagner says, and Esquire is already planning something innovative for its November issue, which will feature “the sexiest woman alive.” Granger wants to experiment with inks next, particularly thermo-dynamic ink, which changes color based on temperature, so words can actually change color. “There’s so much interesting ink technology and that’s one of the next frontiers I want to play with,” he says. We’ve already seen what he can do with paper.last_img read more

WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB The Best Stories From Wilmingtons Newspapers

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below are recent articles about Wilmington — published online between October 7, 2018 to October 14, 2018 — that residents should consider reading:Wilmington Town CrierRehab facility sparks debate again by Lizzie McDermottChalifour named new community liaison officer by Cassia BurnsGrand opening of Memory Loss Cafe on Wednesday, Oct. 17 by Sheryl WalshWilmington man arrested for assault by Cassia BurnsJoe Schneider gears up for Nov. 6 election by Lizzy HillWilmington Town Crier sports stories can be read HERE.Wilmington AdvocateNoneWilmington PatchNoneLowell SunBan on plastic: It’s in the bag by Kori TuittWilmington assistant town manager leaving for N. Andover by Kori TuittLike Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”WILMINGTON AROUND THE WEB: The Best Stories From Wilmington’s NewspapersIn “Community”last_img read more

West Bengal to host next IT sector trade union

first_imgRepresentational ImageWest Bengal might soon become the fourth state in the country after Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu with an IT sector trade union.The Kolkata Forum for Information Technology Employees on Saturday said it had applied for the trade union registration in Information Technology, Information Technology Enabled Services, Business Process Outsourcing and Knowledge Process Outsourcing industries. The forum is part of the national platform – Forum for IT Employees, which was established in 2014.The forum has an elected president, secretary and treasurer apart from 180 employees who have registered as members. “We plan to enrol 5,000 members,” said forum’s president Santanu Bhattacharya.He further added that the plan to register the trade union was “triggered and accelerated” by unfair labour practices which the employees could not resist in their personal capacity.The forum’s general secretary, Rajashri Dawn, stated that despite having various heads for cost-cutting most IT companies choose labour is the only means of reducing operating costs.However, even without having a formal registration the members had tried to guide various employees in the process of filing disputes at the Labour Commission and later in their legal fights.last_img read more

China still lags US but building towards navy

first_imgThe PLA Navy is likely to secure significant new funding in China’s upcoming defence budget as Beijing seeks to check U.S. dominance of the high seas and step up its own projection of power around the globe.China’s navy has been taking an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and new Chinese warships popping up in far-flung places.Now, with President Donald Trump promising a U.S. shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.”It’s opportunity in crisis,” said a Beijing-based Asian diplomat, of China’s recent naval moves. “China fears Trump will turn on them eventually as he’s so unpredictable and it’s getting ready.”Beijing does not give a breakdown for how much it spends on the navy, and the overall official defence spending figures it gives – 954.35 billion yuan ($139 billion) for 2016 – likely understates its investment, according to diplomats.China unveils the defence budget for this year at next month’s annual meeting of parliament, a closely watched figure around the region and in Washington, for clues to China’s intentions.China surprised last year with its lowest increase in six years, 7.6 percent, the first single-digit rise since 2010, following a nearly unbroken two-decade run of double-digit jumps.”Certainly, the PLA Navy has really been the beneficiary of a lot of this new spending in the past 15 years,” said Richard Bitzinger, Senior Fellow and Coordinator of the Military Transformations Programme at the S.Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore.”We don’t how much they spend on the navy, but simply extrapolating from the quantity and the quality of things that are coming out of their shipyards, it’s pretty amazing.”RAPID DEVELOPMENTThe Chinese navy, once generally limited to coastal operations, has developed rapidly under President Xi Jinping’s ambitious military modernisation.It commissioned 18 ships in 2016, including missile destroyers, corvettes and guided missile frigates, according to state media.Barely a week goes by without an announcement of some new piece of equipment, including an electronic reconnaissance ship put into service in January.Still, the PLA Navy significantly lags the United States, which operates 10 aircraft carriers to China’s one, the Soviet-era Liaoning.Xu Guangyu, a retired major general in the People’s Liberation Army now senior adviser to the government-run China Arms Control and Disarmament Association, said China was keenly aware of the U.S. ability to project power at sea.”It’s like a marathon and we’re falling behind. We need to step on the gas,” Xu said.Trump has vowed to increase the U.S. Navy to 350 ships from the current 290 as part of “one of the “greatest military buildups in American history”, a move aides say is needed to counter China’s rise as a military power.”We’ve known this is a 15-20 year project and every year they get closer to being a blue-water navy with global aspirations,” said a U.S. administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity.”What you have seen this last year and what I think you will see with the new budget is that they are moving ahead with the short-term goal of being the premier naval force in the South China Sea and the East China Sea, with the mid-term goal, of extending all the way to the Indian Ocean.”In January, China appointed new navy chief, Shen Jinlong, to lead that push.Shen has enjoyed a meteoric rise and is close to Xi, diplomatic and leadership sources say.”The navy has gotten very lucky with Shen,” said a Chinese official close to the military, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Now they know for certain their support goes all the way to the top.”Recent PLA Navy missions have included visits to Gulf states, where the United States has traditionally protected sea lanes, and to the South China Sea, Indian Ocean and Western Pacific, in what the state-run website StrongChina called Shen’s “first show of force against the United States, Japan and Taiwan”.Last month, a Chinese submarine docked at a port in Malaysia’s Sabah state, which lies on the South China Sea, only the second confirmed visit of a Chinese submarine to a foreign port, according to state media.The submarine had come from supporting anti-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia, where China has been learning valuable lessons about overseas naval operations since 2008.Chinese warships have also been calling at ports in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar, unnerving regional rival India.”It’s power projection,” said a Beijing-based Western diplomat, of China’s navy. ($1 = 6.8640 Chinese yuan)last_img read more

Bengal sees huge response in India BPO promotion scheme bidding

first_imgKolkata: Bengal received a positive response in the recently concluded bidding of the India BPO Promotion Scheme (IBPS), much to the delight of the state Information Technology (IT) & Electronics department and the Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), the nodal agency of the union ministry of IT and Electronics for this scheme. Bengal has applied for as many as 500 seats, nearly an increase of 2.5 times. Last time, out of a total of 48,300 seats, the state had accounted for only 200 seats. “A company based in Krishnanagar, Nadia has availed 400 seats while another in Siliguri has applied for 100 seats,” a senior official of the state IT department said. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe IBPS, envisaged under the Digital India Programme, seeks to incentivise the establishment of 48,300 seats in respect of BPO/ITES operations across the country, with a focus on Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities. The scheme has an outlay of Rs 493 crore and aims at creating capacity building in smaller cities in terms of infrastructure and manpower. Bengal has an allocation of 1,700 seats in this scheme.Officials of STPI in Bengal feel that stringent eligibility criteria had been a major factor in Bengal’s lukewarm response to the scheme. “It should be noted that most of the state’s activities take place in Kolkata Metropolitan Area, where this scheme is not applicable. Hence, the response was not positive last time. However, the response has been satisfactory this time,” a senior STPI official added. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedA senior IT department official felt that lack of awareness regarding a financial assistance of upto Rs 1 lakh per seat, which can be sought under the scheme, had also been a reason for the poor response.At a workshop organised by STPI in the city on April 20, state Additional Chief Secretary IT Debashis Sen had urged people working in the IT sector to spread the word around through tweets, Facebook and other social media channels. “This has contributed in the rise of seat applications,” an IT official said. The state IT department has adopted a two-tier approach in the IT sector. Apart from holding knowledge sharing workshops on emerging technologies like Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Robotics etc at the state level, it is also holding workshops at the district level in collaboration with Nasscom, Webel and local chambers to enable people to have an idea of the facilities offered by the state government and STPI, if somebody wants to set up a BPO or other IT start ups.last_img read more