Monday, February 11, 2013

Sport by Chicago Sun-Times debuted on Sunday

On Thursday of last week TNM reported on the launch of a new digital magazine from the Chicago Sun-Times. Sport by Chicago Sun-Times joined a growing portfolio of tablet magazines launched by the tabloid newspaper, many of which have been using the Mag+ platform to create their apps and digital magazines.

"Delivered each Sunday, Sport by Chicago Sun-Times is your complete source for news, information and analysis about the major Chicago sports teams. This fan-focused app features in-depth analysis of the Bulls, Blackhawks, White Sox, Cubs and Bears." – from the app description.
 photo Sun-Times-Sport-iPad-sm_zpsf2dd0bcf.gif
As the app launched on Thursday, and the tablet magazines would appear on Sunday, the new app contained an empty library. But this weekend the first issue appeared and the magazine looks good. Unlike the paper's previous efforts, this one was designed to be read in landscape, and the decision appears to have paid off as the photography rich magazine lies naturally in landscape orientation.

I called several people at the Sun-Times, as well as Mag+, but couldn't get anyone to respond, so there is not much else to say about Sport other than what is apparent here in the screenshots. Things I would find interesting to know would be whether the plan is to sell digital-only advertising to support the new app or whether they will be selling print-digital packages.

One thing about the digital magazine that stood out, however, is how dependent the editors are going to be on outside sources of photography. Much of what is seen here in the first issue is credited to Getty Images. It should serve as a reminder to publishers everywhere that there is an alternative to staff layoffs: if your products can not support current staffing levels, one option is to create more products.