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Syntagma turns one

Syntagma turns one

The blog network that calls itself Network Magazine (The Original Network Magazine according to the header today, a bit cheesy if you ask me) turned one the other day. Syntagma has apparently achieved what they wanted, according to Johns’€™ birthday post.

Congratulations on your first birthday, Syntagma, I wish you all the best!

However, it’€™ll be interesting to see where you’€™re at when you turn two. Perhaps branding yourselves as Typewriter Online Publication?

View Comments (8)
  • Nothing cheesy about being the “original”, Thord. But thanks for the congrats.

    As for the end of Y2, we’ll be atomized into around six network magazines and challenging the big boys of the print world using distributed “blogging” technology.

  • Good luck for your next year, John.

    I’m not 100% sure you’re on the right track, you seem strangely anti-blog networks over the past few months, almost obssessed with taking pot shots at every opportunity.

    I know you want to get out of echo chamber that is the “blogosphere” and distance yourself from being a blog network with a limited “geeky” audience and go mainstream – but you’re using all the hallmarks of blogging – so I don’t see where the differentiation sits to attract the mainstream.

    You take a swipe at b5’s recent funding and then you’re offering a stake in your network for a designer … a designer!!! (which is very strange, imo).

    And then you see as your competitors Time Inc. and Conde Nast – now that’s reaching for the skies don’t you think. You’re talking about competing with billion dollar + publishing businesses – and here you can’t even afford decent designs on your “blogs”.

    As you would know, one aspect of traditional magazines is their focus on slick, glossy designs. You need serious help in that regards, because your designs if I may say, are pretty bland – and that’s were outside funding may come in to help. That and paying for a sales/advertising manager to attract top-notch advertisers/sponsors.

    I think if you really want to break away from the pack and attack a new audience you need a real business plan and some serious funding to get it done.

    And then there is the actual blog architecture of the way you’re presenting your “magazine”. You have all the hallmarks of a blog but seem to be simply wanting to put them into channels (but calling it a web magaine). I really don’t see the difference from what you’re doing and the many blog networks out there. Words really mean little – but essentially you’re still a network of blogs, albeit putting your blogs into channels – all you seem to be trying to do is simply change the term “blog networks” to “web magazine”with little real change.

    I’m yet to be convinced that this will work (not that you have to prove anything to me). But I think you’re totally on a one-track mind by this desire to escape the blog network tag that it affects eveything else you do.

    Just my 2 cents worth there.

    And that’s the last you’ll hear from me and my thoughts.

    Anyhow, it was fun these last weeks verbally going back and forward, and I’ll be watching on the sidelines how you go about this – but you’ve set yourself lofty goals.

    Good luck.

  • Martin, if you can’t see the difference between a magazine and a channel, then you really are stuck in the blogosphere. Words mean a lot when they are part of your branding. As for the implementation, that hasn’t happened yet, as you’ll see from my piece.

    You’re right about design, and we want to make a top-flight designer part of our operation on an ongoing basis. That’s why I’m not just hiring one for one-off jobs. A shareholding is the obvious way here.

    Competing with Conde Nast etc is a bit of flag-waving at this stage, I’ll grant you, but I really do believe there’s a niche there waiting to be filled. I define it as a native, online, distributed, network magazine industry, which, in terms of branding and synergies, as well as information architecture, takes blog networks to another level. The only residue of blog networks will be the blogging technology, i.e, WordPress.

    It’s not rocket science, Martin, but its success hinges on the publishing side rather than the techology, which is pretty common these days.

    As print magazines come online to reduce costs, and build monolithic websites, we’ll be taking a different approach, using techniques developed for blog networks, but with the publishing values of print media.

    As for funding, there’s a lot in the pipeline that you don’t know about, so don’t jump to conclusions. ;-)

  • John – I’m “jumping to conclusions” re: funding, based on what you write at your blog. I get the impression that you’re not after funding, you say you haven’t got the time to go after funding, you don’t want it etc.,

    I still see it as strange that you will gladly give away a chunk of equity of the network to a designer. That says to me you’ve got not funds to pay for design work – hence why you need some funding.

    Unless you change the architecture of wordpress the residue still sticks of a blog network and blogs. You may name it a “magazine” but as more and more people outside of the blogosphere understand blogs all they’ll see of you is a network of blogs – I assume you’ll still be publishing posts in chronological order, with comments and trackbacks etc., am I correct? Or will you develop a magazine-type layout?

    All I see is confusion as you’re trying to force readers to throwaway the “blog” term for a new one – when nothing has really changed.

    You’re right, I can’t see the difference between a “magazine” and a channel with what you plan to do – enlighten me/us.

  • Here’s hoping you find a great designer John — it doesn’t matter if your claims about the top network magazine are true or not; the loftiest reputations will mean little to new viewers, potential sponsors/ advertisers, and the rest if your current design looks … uh … gee, how do I put it nicely? (what’s with the rainbows?)

  • Unfortunately, that’s what the the designers keep telling me – image is everything. I’m still working on what the programmers were telling me – content is everything. Soon .. I’ll have to listen to what my readers are telling me – my blogs suck.

  • Ha ha ha — hart, that reminds me of a doctor joke.

    Surgeons know nothing, but do everything.
    Internists (that’s me) know everything, but do nothing.
    Psychiatrists know nothing and do nothing.
    And …
    Pathologist know everything and do everything.

    But its too late. ;)

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