RSPB Magazines!

I don’t know if I’m imagining this. But has anyone else noticed the quarterly RSPB magazine getting smaller. I don’t know if I’m imagining this. Many decades ago the old glossy RSPB magazine Birds was published 6 times a year. Then later on the RSPB considered reducing the number of the 6 Birds magazines to quarterly. There where quite a lot of members at that time didn’t want that to happen. But the.RSPB kept the same number of pages in total as the 6 magazines but put more pages  in the 4 quarterly magazines but saved on the postage.But over the last 2-3 years the 4 RSPB magazines feel as if they have less pages when I first pick up to read the magazines 4 times a year. Maybe I’m wrong,, maybe I’m right. Also I personally feel that the RSPB magazine has deteriorated in interesting article. It all now seems to be campaigning most of the time. Less printing of interesting articles than there once was. There seems to be more photographers, along with pictures and less printing of words than there once was. It’s alright campaigning of which I agree with some, some I don’t,But on top of the.magazine feeling smaller. I feel the inside seems of less interest to me myself. Maybe there are those that feel the magazine at present is ok. That’s fair enough. But I’m just posting my opinions and thoughts. Maybe most RSPB members like the the present quarterly RSPB magazine as it is. I would like to hear other RSPB members views.

  • For many years I’ve subscribe to the monthly British Birds which is a serious scientific monthly journal about wild birds. The RSPB magazine used to have lots of serious articles. But not for many years. I’ve wanted to post my feelings for many years and I might even bring this up in the autumn of 2023 at the RSPB’s AGM!

  • I don't read much of it. I'll confess I'm sick to death of those double-page adverts for holidays which cost thousands of pounds a person - we'll never, in a million years, be able to go on one. The RSPB need to recognize that many of us ordinary mortals are on incomes which firmly place us in the bottom quarter of UK incomes and we do well to have a week in the UK somewhere.
  • Hi

    I was away visiting friends to do a couple of days birding to start the New Year-

    happened to see the latest RSPB mag- *** no longer called Nature's Home ( ?) and it had Britain's top 60 best wildlife places according to the top 60 movers and shakers - I whizsed through it- spotted a few old friends and then realised...

    NO ARTISTS?
    Darren Woodhead and Killian Mullarney not available?

    Seemed odd- thought maybe I was biased a bit but other ( keen birders / RSPB volunteer types ) thought it was an omission too:

    Was it just us?

    S

    *** Yes I'm a long time ( decades) member but I rarely read it- obviously:)
  • While I don't have the page sizes of my earlier mags, so I've nothing to compare to, 2020, covid year, one of my mountaineering mags had noticeably reduced size.

    How did I know, I still hadn't read the previous months issue, which was considerably considerably larger, and had more pages, so Ian, you could very well be right.

    Likewise, so had many of the contributors to that mag disappeared, instead of eight or ten, it was down to four, and one of those was the editor, and guess what, the ads had taken quite a lot of space which would have been interesting articles.

    Once the subscription was up, I didn't renew.

    It is a very sad sign of the times, anything that is/was, remotely interesting seems to have succumbed to adverts, and in my personal experience, YouTube is the worst. I get very frustrated with watching an interesting video and randomly, often at a key point, adverts appear.

    So my apologies to those who spend hours compiling videos for YouTube, but I no longer give that platform the time of day.

    Desperate and sad times......

  • seymouraves said:
    Hi

    I was away visiting friends to do a couple of days birding to start the New Year-

    happened to see the latest RSPB mag- *** no longer called Nature's Home ( ?) and it had Britain's top 60 best wildlife places according to the top 60 movers and shakers - I whizsed through it- spotted a few old friends and then realised...

    NO ARTISTS?
    Darren Woodhead and Killian Mullarney not available?

    Seemed odd- thought maybe I was biased a bit but other ( keen birders / RSPB volunteer types ) thought it was an omission too:

    Was it just us?

    S

    *** Yes I'm a long time ( decades) member but I rarely read it- obviously:)
    I’m the same a long time member like you and decades like you. So I find the best magazine(journal actually) British Birds the best serious read every month that I enjoy to read!
  • Thinking back to the earlier magazines they did seem to cover i.d. of species more than in recent years which was quite handy as we did not have such a wide selection of field guides to refer to as we do now As ItsaRobbo has pointed out there seems to be quite a few repeats or poorly diguisef rewrites. There are  a lot more bird magazines available now to buy and local wildlife trusts have decent magazines compared to the newsletters they used to send to members so we have a lot to compare the RSPB magazine with. It would not be my first choice of reading if I had to buy it off the shelf. My non birding sister gets more pleasure than me from the RSPB magazine I think she reads the large cruise adverts and dreams of being able to afford them.

  • The repeats and poorly disguised re-runs is a sad scenario for many magazines. I may have mentioned this  before, once all my outdoor mag subs come to an end, they will be confined to history, for it is very prevalent there as well.

    Repeats, perhaps something to consider, there is only so much a publisher can write/publish before they run out of new topics. If you've been a reader for many years, then you will notice these more so, unlike a newcomer, who will see them for the first time.

    Just a thought, which could be very wrong, and I accept the correction(s).

    As for the campaigning, that has rightly or otherwise, reached an extremely high portion of all conservation groups activities.

    As for the government listening, I don't think so, unless, there's money in it for them and investors, which is why our National Parks are seeing reduced national funding and being forced to raise funds elsewhere, much of which is not nature or conservation orientated, because it does not attract.

    Or am I being too cynical....

    Here, I fear within five to ten years, with the incessant house building, plus HS2 (which is fueling house and business development), we will become part of Birmingham, and no doubt along with other towns and villages around and about.

    Thankfully I'm old and have seen the best before its too late, but not something the younger generations have seen, so they cannot fully appreciate what has been lost. I was the same some hmmmm plus years ago in my teens and early twenties....

    Now retired, I've seen the accelerating rate land is been consumed for construction, and it is accelerating extremely fast around here.

    The world has changed, in my opinion, and very significantly. It seems to me to be all fast finance and nothing else.

    What I will end with, and I think it has been mentioned here, if nothing else, unlike many organisations, the RSPB does facilitate affordable membership. Taking that onboard, along with the growing pressure on conservation organisations finances in the current world, which we all accept, has gone beyond all acceptable reason, is the increased adverts and repeats is probably a thing to accept with what we still have.

    Just another thought.

  • I have to say I find the mag very dull, repetitive and predictable. Each edition disappoints me a little more than its predecessor. I maintain my RSPB subscription because I appreciate the good work being done on the reserves, but not for many other reasons. Even the campaigning is leaden-footed and unimaginative.
  • Sorry to bump this thread. Bit the latest RSPB magazine now seem even smaller than it was. You can tell before you open this new look magazine that there is less to read as the weight now feels much lighter. And I very rarely read any of the articles anymore from this present RSPB magazine

  • There are 82 pages, plus cover in the current edition - the same as in the previous edition.

    Like Ian, I have been somewhat underwhelmed by the content of late, but the magazine now has a new editor and maybe she will make some changes once she has settled in.