Journals encouraged to enlarge their readership  (© CEEBP Newsletter 9, June 2001)

Compared with the cover price, the production costs of Central and East European journals are often too high. The cover price should be raised, but publishers are hesitant to take such measures because they fear - not without reason - that their reading public will decrease. If, however, they could offer subscriptions at a cheaper rate, the risk would be diminished, while their source of income will improve. Larger numbers of loyal subscribers are a guarantee for the continuing existence of journals.
The CEEBP offers quality journals a gradually decreasing three-year subsidy to cover the difference between subscription rate and cover price. In this manner, the CEEBP will finance the lower subscription rates. The subsidy will decrease from 100 percent of the difference (first year), to 70 percent (second year) and then to 40 percent (third and last year). Until recently, such a scheme was offered only for library subscriptions. The new set-up is meant for individual subscribers, too. The support will include money to be used for promoting subscriptions.

The CEEBP also encourages journals to find a new public via the Internet. Journals can apply for support to develop a new website or improve the existing site, as well as for assistance in defraying the costs of using a server or computer equipment. Electronic publishing offers opportunities for promotion, distribution, redesigning the lay-out, reducing printing and distribution costs, and attracting advertisers.

The editor of the Belgrade monthly Alexandria is very enthusiastic about the effect of his website, which has been up and running for about a year. New readers and advertisers are being attracted, visitors are offering articles and manuscripts that may be of interest to him, and through the website, all kinds of national and international contacts are being made. Other magazine publishers, such as the Hungarian BUKSZ, have similar experience.

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