Ours are just overloaded, in other places it’s truly crap.
After seven years, Clamor Magazine is folding. Clamor were good people providing viewpoints and voices that aren’t often heard. Darn.
The Independent Press Association has (not unexpectedly) gone toes up. Punk Planet and their ilk are the sufferers here. Magazine distribution is, well, pick your favorite metaphor for pain and suffering, add a pinch of humilation, and that feeling you get when there’s a long, long queue at the post office and the only person working is medically dead, and it’s something like that. The IPA hoped to help but failed. Magazine distribution choices are disappearing faster than hope for clean elections.
Then the elephant in the room: AMS and their Chapter 11 bankruptcy. AMS have been under SEC investigation since at least 2002. They have been delisted from the stock market for not complying with quarterly reporting rules and a few ex-top execs who messed with ad revenue figures are trying out alternative modes of living. ie prison. AMS are huge: they supply CostCo with those pallets of books that lie around the front of the warehouses (whoopee, that’s some fun shoppin’). AMS are also, as of a couple of years ago, the parent company of Publishers Group West, exclusive distributors for Soft Skull, McSweeney’s Books, Tin House, and ~150 others. Fingers crossed that if PGW are sold off quick the publishers see their money and not just pennies on the dollar.