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Metamorphosis in the gun media

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We've got some bad news, and some good news. It's all about change.

First, the bad news! The final issue of Gun Week will be dated Dec. 1, 2011 and will be a double issue. With the publication and mailing of the December issue of Gun Week, a unique and important 45-year adventure in publishing for the firearms community will come to an end.

But now some good news!

The legacy and purposes of Gun Week, launched in 1966 to provide reliable, independent weekly news for the entire family of firearms owners, firearms civil rights activists and the gun industry will live on in multiple forms. The vital information so necessary to preserving and expanding the right to keep and bear arms that always has been a Gun Week tradition will continue, but it will take new shapes that are sustainable in a changing media world.

Before I report on how that tradition will continue, and what it means to our subscribers, let me recap some ancient and recent history. Gun Week has been a labor of love and individual dedication throughout its history, but it never has been a money-maker for any of its three publishing companies.

Production costs have always been escalating, especially postage. It has gotten to the point where the cost of mailing each issue is about twice the cost of producing it. In the current economic climate, a major increase in subscription prices seems out of order as an alternative.

Some readers will remember that Gun Week frequency had to be cut from a weekly in January 1996 to three times a month, and then to twice a month in January 2007. The relentless increase in the cost of postage and necessary increases in subscription prices were not the only threat to the publication. The advent of the Internet and free access to news and commentary changed the reading habits of a nation and divided us between those who still like to hold the written page, reading and referring back to it. Others, mostly younger generations, want to access information in capsulized form instantly at the click of a button-seemingly without cost.

The trustees of the Second Amendment Foundation see no reason to be wasteful with the donations of our supporters in order to prop up a news vehicle that could no longer live up to the name of a weekly, or even a bi-weekly. A more vigorous legal action agenda in defense of the Second Amendment seems a wiser investment.

So here is what will happen. The Second Amendment Foundation will create a new monthly magazine called TheGunMag.com, and a new website of the same name, simultaneously in January 2012. However, the content will not be exactly the same.

Subscribers should receive their first print copy of TheGunMag.com by mail in late December.

This dual medium approach will enable us to continue to publish and deliver all of the news in a monthly format, under production deadlines that are much shorter and speedier than all other monthly gun magazines, while returning to an abbreviated but weekly news update on the Internet through TheGunMag.com site.

TheGunMag.com print and online editions will continue to deliver the news as fast as both processes will allow. The monthly print edition will include most of the same news, features and writers you relied on Gun Week to deliver. However, TheGunMag.com website will enable us to be more up to date on the news side, with news reports summarized by the week and posted weekly in abbreviated form. Not all content will be the same.

TheGunMag.com will receive a new launch treatment for wider newsstand sales at the single copy rate of $3.95 US ($5.95 in Canada), with subscription prices of $25 for one year (12 issues), and $45 for two years (24 issues).

The Second Amendment Foundation remains committed to fulfilling its mission as an informational and educational resource for gunowners while pursuing an accelerated program of legal action for all gunowners' rights.

We would not be able close out the colorful history of the gallant Gun Week, without expressing our thanks to our loyal subscribers and to our advertisers.

I invite you to join us as a subscriber to the monthly TheGunMag.com print edition.

Sincerely,
Joseph P. Tartaro
Executive Editor
President, Second Amendment Foundation

Women & Guns

The only magazine in the world written and edited by women gunowners for women gunowners. No-nonsense product reviews with women's unique concerns in mind. Columns focused on practical and useful  self-defense strategies, legal aspects of gunownership and more. Profiles of women gunowners, and the latest on recreational shooting, including major matches.

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