Yesterday I came across an article that somewhere between the lines mentions the topic of subscribing to “professional” articles in certain field of interest. Reading it, got me thinking why and when would I pay for article subscription. Here are my thoughts and views. First lets define “professional”. At certain level articles can be of two types: “HowTo” and “My thoughts or overviews” type. To be honest, the more I am into the development, the more I like the second ones. Then there is the “credibility” of the author. Is he a PhD “talk only” person or practitioner without any significant official education but with extreme knowledge in his field. Personally I like the other one more. Not to say that “talk only” people are not important as well.
Writing a good and useful article can be a tedious and time consuming tasks. Personal overview here, sometimes it takes me 2-4 hours to write an article here at Inchoo.net and Ajzele.net. Most of them are far from what I see as “professional” level. Writing good stuff takes time, effort and knowledge. Most of people have no second thoughts when it comes to taking out money for their favorite magazine, but when it comes to paying articles online things are different. I guess that paying something that you cannot touch and feel is generally always tricky.
Here is how I see professional content. If its released periodically as magazine then it should follow certain “layout pattern”, should have some minimum content length, should have clear and concise intro, “the core” and conclusion, should make me “think and rethink” after reading it.
Would I pay for article subscription myself? Probably not. Not because of the price, since most of the subscriptions are quite cheap, but because of the “I only take free” approach we tend to have for content on web.
Would I love to be subscribed to “professional” articles. Yes!
The article subscription is something I see more suitable for businesses. If my company has 5, 10… or more developers and we are all experts in certain area, then I would most definitely enjoy having subscription model that guaranties me 10-20 “out of field of business” articles each month. Its more then just reading a “HowTo” on certain topic. Having heard (read) other people opinions can make us “see” things we might have overlooked due to narrowed views and different approach in everyday work.
I would like to hear your thoughts on this subject.