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Thread: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

  1. #1
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    Default WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    As most know, I'm generally a staunch defender of all things WoodenBoat, but this time they've really gone off the deep end and need to make a serious course correction.

    I sent the below to the publisher just now. If you agree, speak up or forever hold your... whatever.

    TO: 'andrew@woodenboat.com'

    Dear Mr. Breece:

    I’ve just received my subscription copy of the January/February edition of WoodenBoat with the tear-off “false cover,” as you call it, which you explain protects the magazine in the mail, rather than the plastic bag in which it was previously mailed. You explain on the front of this sacrificial page that you have done away with the plastic mailing bags because “…
    numerous subscribers have expressed environmental concerns over the plastic bags in which their copies of WoodenBoat were delivered.” You’ve asked for feedback about the condition in which our copies have been received. By some miracle from the hand of the Almighty, my copy arrived undamaged. Lucky you. This time around.

    I’ve been subscribing to Wooden Boat since the early 1980’s, as I recall. I bought it at my local newsstand before then. I have a complete set of mint condition issues in WoodenBoat slipcovers. (The slipcovers being outrageously expensive at ten bucks each for what is essentially a cardboard box, but I digress.) I realize I may have been a subscriber longer than you’ve been wearing long pants. Obviously, you don’t remember the last time WoodenBoat stopped mailing copies in plastic bags, that being something your mailing contractor tried to foist off on us. You had subscribers surrounding your offices with pitchforks and torches that time and the problem was immediately rectified to everyone’s relief and satisfaction.

    Make no mistake about it. A cheesy tear-off cover is not acceptable. Nobody wants a copy that looks like the cover has been torn off, which is exactly what it is. More importantly, if you think for a moment that mailing a magazine in the US Mail isn’t going to result in a high number of copies ending up torn, dog-eared, scuffed, folded, wet, and otherwise trashed, I’d like a hit of what you’re smokin’. I guess you don’t have a lot of experience with the mail. Are you going to guarantee that anybody who gets a trashed copy will get another one promptly sent to them upon demand? I don’t think you want to go there. I guess since you are the publisher, you must not have a boss, because I can’t imagine anybody who had a boss and did something like you’ve done not being told to start looking for another job.

    I strongly suggest you “grow a pair” and tell the “numerous subscribers (who) have expressed environmental concerns over the plastic bags” to get over it. There are a lot more important environmental concerns than mailing a magazine in a plastic bag. Tell them if they’ve got their panties in a bunch all that much they can try one of the following alternatives:

    1. Buy their copy at their local newsstand.

    2. Subscribe to the on-line digital edition.

    3. Recycle the plastic bags their print copy was mailed in. (As I do myself.)

    4. Burn the plastic bags, which will result in a slight bit of air pollution, but will reduce the bag to a microscopic bit of ash and thereby eliminate any risk of a sea turtle ingesting it, should it ever end up in the ocean in the first place.

    5. Drop dead immediately. I realize this last option may be considered a bit extreme, and it really does boil down to how serious they really are about preserving the environment. No matter how you cut it, suicide totally eliminates one’s personal carbon footprint which, if they continue living, will only continue to contribute to the degradation of the environment for as long as they live. This is truly the most effective thing any one person can do for the environment, but, unfortunately, all too many are content to wring their hands over “their concerns” and propose what others should be made to endure, rather than doing something truly effective themselves.

    All kidding aside, your tear-off cover does nothing effective to protect your product. It was a really stupid idea the last time it was tried. It still is. You need to “man up” and admit you made a mistake trying to cater to a few fringe nut cases. If you really think you must mollify them, then mail the magazine in a non-plastic cardboard mailing envelope such as those the USPS gives away free for such use, or something similar.

    Bob Cleek
    Petaluma, CA
    Last edited by Bob Cleek; 12-22-2019 at 04:08 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    #5 might be a bit severe. But besides that I’m with you, Bob.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Did you also write the letter in 1980?

    Macho crap is so stupid.

    Peace,
    Robert

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    So Bob, you gonna give up your subscription over this. Personally I’ve had enough, the stack of Woodenboat Magazines that I have in ‘near mint condition’ were not packed for the move to Phoenix, and will not be packed for the next round of moving. I’m moving on to digital editions. . .

    If anybody wants my collection dating back to 1980 or thereabouts let me know when you’ll next be in Hell and you can have them. . .

    sign me, in full on decluttering mode. . .
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by amish rob View Post
    Did you also write the letter in 1980?
    lol
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Who knew Bob was such a fan of plastic....


    Back in my day, they only bound manuscripts in lambskin!

    We want leather!
    We want leather!

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Maybe I should buy a magazine or book someday?
    How do they hold up?

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Two of the magazines I receive through the mail come in wrappings made using potato starch and are claimed to be 100% compostable.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post
    So Bob, you gonna give up your subscription over this. Personally I’ve had enough, the stack of Woodenboat Magazines that I have in ‘near mint condition’ were not packed for the move to Phoenix, and will not be packed for the next round of moving. I’m moving on to digital editions. . .

    If anybody wants my collection dating back to 1980 or thereabouts let me know when you’ll next be in Hell and you can have them. . .

    sign me, in full on decluttering mode. . .
    Yeah, I've had the same thought. Maybe in a few years. At the moment, I'm about to build a large office, drafting room and library onto my shop, so room isn't going to be an issue immediately.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by J.Madison View Post
    Who knew Bob was such a fan of plastic....


    Back in my day, they only bound manuscripts in lambskin!

    We want leather!
    We want leather!
    Good point! Bind a year's worth in leather hardcovers.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by oldcodger View Post
    Two of the magazines I receive through the mail come in wrappings made using potato starch and are claimed to be 100% compostable.
    That works for me! There are all sorts of environmentally friendly solutions besides putting a "tear off cover" on the thing.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Classic Cleek

    But I think it and Paul's post above point to the fact that environmentally adverse or not, paper copies mailed out should be in the plastic covers for as long as there is a demand for mail subscriptions. And I would be surprised if there is a need for mail subscriptions a decade from now.

    I passed along my full collection years ago, and while I have kept my mail subscription as a way of supporting WoodenBoat, I haven't read one in years. I give away my copies as they come in and/or leave them in waiting rooms or airplane seat backs for the next person.

    When this renewal comes up, I'll be going digital.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    I disagree Mr. Cleek, my copy arrived fine and I endorse the solution. That is,... if a "solution" is even necessary. I've been subscribing to one print periodical or another for over 50 years and the great majority of those publications came with no extra coverings at all. I didn't then, nor would I now again, find the product diminished to such a degree that I would reject it. I'll forward the suggestion that we simply return to no additional coverings at all. But as I said, and as it stands, the extra paper cover works fine for me.
    Last edited by Gold Rock; 12-22-2019 at 09:32 AM.
    Chuck Hancock

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    And Get Off Of My Dadblamed LAWN!!!
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    I received my copy with the tear off cover, and tore it off. Now it looks tattered, the 1/2" remainder detracts from the lovely picture on the cover, and will need to get glued down before I'm happy with it. The back cover didn't leave the loose piece, to me, this isn't a good solution.
    O
    --------(\ ----------
    ~ (\ ~ ~ ~ ~
    ~ ~ ~ ~ (\ ~ ~ ~ ~
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    And Get Off Of My Dadblamed LAWN!!!
    But I have to say... I am mightily impressed with the level of passion our Cleek managed to generate over a mere triviality. Kudos!!!

    Bob... just THINK of what that sort of energy could accomplish when channeled into something productive. Volunteer opportunities abound!!!

    ACLU -- https://www.aclu.org/

    Feeding America -- https://www.feedingamerica.org/

    Fair Fight (elections) -- https://fairfight.com/

    Semper Fi Fund (veterans) -- https://semperfifund.org/

    UU Social Justice -- https://www.uua.org/justice

    Sierra Club -- https://www.sierraclub.org/

    Etc.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    In my book, Cleek has earned his right to rant.
    As far as protecting the magazines from the Post Office's manhandling, why not encapsulate them in epoxy!

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Wadsworth View Post
    In my book, Cleek has earned his right to rant.
    As far as protecting the magazines from the Post Office's manhandling, why not encapsulate them in epoxy!
    Because - as we all know - epoxy is crap!

    Hey - you open the door wide & guess what happens...
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Y’all got waaaaay too much time on your hands!! LOL!

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    and as if we really believed that cleek’s porn collection is in mint condition. . .
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    I think you should chill. There are many more serious issues in the world that one could confront.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    But I have to say... I am mightily impressed with the level of passion our Cleek managed to generate over a mere triviality. Kudos!!!

    Bob... just THINK of what that sort of energy could accomplish when channeled into something productive. Volunteer opportunities abound!!!

    ACLU -- https://www.aclu.org/

    Feeding America -- https://www.feedingamerica.org/

    Fair Fight (elections) -- https://fairfight.com/

    Semper Fi Fund (veterans) -- https://semperfifund.org/

    UU Social Justice -- https://www.uua.org/justice

    Sierra Club -- https://www.sierraclub.org/

    Etc.
    David, there's nothing quite like a good rant. It gets the blood flowing. Unfortunately, there are always the "humorously challenged." They are best ignored.

    Your point that there are many deserving causes to which one might devote their energies is well taken and I join you in endorsing those you've mentioned. As a litigator, I make my living generating high levels of passion over "mere trivialities." I love my work and sometimes I even just do it for fun. The point here isn't about denying the environmental problems caused by "plastics." (This is a wooden boat forum, after all.) The point is two-fold. First, there's the amazing fact that there are people with so much time on their hands and so little imagination to do it that they'd be complaining to a magazine publisher about the plastic bag in which their publication is mailed. As a bona fide Boomer radical, I know these "limousine liberals" well. (You know the type. They all donate to PBS, but complain about their tax dollars being spent to help the homeless.) I really don't have much truck with people who limit themselves to protesting about "safe" issues like plastic bags. Nobody's "putting it on the line" complaining about plastic bags. Come on. Are plastic bags all you've got? Give me a break.

    Secondly, and most importantly, the publisher's spineless pandering to these complaints is really quite remarkable. Even so, he could have accommodated these "concerns" in a far more effective manner if it was so important that he felt the need to respond at all. As I pointed out, all they had to do was stick the magazine in a paper envelope. What's so hard about that? The "tear off cover" was utterly ineffective and unacceptable. Since the publisher obviously responds to public pressure, I feel entirely justified in giving him some in the opposite direction just to keep the dialectic working.

    Now, as for those who may still feel the need for an environmental "cause," here's an even more pressing environmental issue than plastic bags, oil based boat paint, or even red lead. Friends and neighbors, the negative environmental impact of disposable feminine hygiene products is beyond comprehension. How many millions of trees are cut, how many streams polluted, how many pulp mills spewing toxic smoke into the atmosphere, how many plastic wrappers and applicators, how much land filled with the waste? None of this is necessary! It wasn't until the 1920's that the feminine hygiene products industry even existed at all. Before then, women used washable recycled cloth pads which had no negative environmental impact whatsoever. Disposable feminine hygiene products should be prohibited!

    You think I'm crazy? Hey! I live in Sonoma County, California, where the "organic" grocery store sells reusable, washable "feminine napkins" for environmentally concerned women. Now, let me assure you that is not my issue, but it may give you some idea of where this craziness is going.

    Like I said, there's nothing like a great rant to motivate people.


    Last edited by Bob Cleek; 12-22-2019 at 08:09 PM.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post
    and as if we really believed that cleek’s porn collection is in mint condition. . .
    Well, the pages are sorta stuck together on some of the fold-outs in the early issues.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Concordia...41 View Post
    Classic Cleek

    But I think it and Paul's post above point to the fact that environmentally adverse or not, paper copies mailed out should be in the plastic covers for as long as there is a demand for mail subscriptions. And I would be surprised if there is a need for mail subscriptions a decade from now.

    I passed along my full collection years ago, and while I have kept my mail subscription as a way of supporting WoodenBoat, I haven't read one in years. I give away my copies as they come in and/or leave them in waiting rooms or airplane seat backs for the next person.

    When this renewal comes up, I'll be going digital.
    Ain't that the truth! Thanks for helping me not feel guilty when I glaze over and don't read every issue "cover to cover" anymore. There's an article or two of interest in each issue, but most of it has become predictable and formulaic. WB's content used to be pretty sophisticated. It was the magazine for wooden boat "owners, designers, and builders," or something like that. Now, more than half of it is the magazine for "dreamers and newbies." I'm not knocking dreamers or newbies, I just resent having to see a magazine that used to be full of useful and interesting information now more than half full of fluff and filler like "Getting started in boats." How long's that been running and they still aren't finished getting started? The latest installment of that was "Meditations on Hiring Professionals to Work on Your Boat," or something like that. Do they really expect people to pay for that kind of information? Maybe people do. Maybe a lot of us outgrew WB a long time ago. I'm really not sure.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Jeezum Crow Bob! You're worried about tiny little disposal items & didn't do a rant on disposable diapers? You're slipping man! Oh - wait - you slipped on something that came out of a cloth diaper - got it.

    BTW - you done good on winding people up.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    I'll reserve judgement until my copy of the latest issue actually arrives. Out here in the back of beyond (that would be Canada) we sometimes have to wait for the spring thaw for mail to arrive from the centre of the universe.
    Alex

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    I receive other magazines that don't wrap or protect the valuable cover in any way and they all seem to arrive in readable condition.
    For many years I saved them but at some point, a minute or two before they were digitized I sold the collection for $200 and felt a bit smug. It's a rag, who cares?

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by AJZimm View Post
    I'll reserve judgement until my copy of the latest issue actually arrives. Out here in the back of beyond (that would be Canada) we sometimes have to wait for the spring thaw for mail to arrive from the centre of the universe.
    Ah - but they're actually mailed from Vermont - not Maine...
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by J.Madison View Post
    Back in my day, they only bound manuscripts in lambskin!

    We want leather!
    We want leather!
    I think I visited just such place way back in my navy days.....
    I don't cuss much for a sailor - that said, I may cuss to much for a preacher...

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Garret View Post
    Jeezum Crow Bob! You're worried about tiny little disposal items & didn't do a rant on disposable diapers? You're slipping man! Oh - wait - you slipped on something that came out of a cloth diaper - got it.

    BTW - you done good on winding people up.
    Oh yeah. That. It's been a while since I've had to deal with the disposable diaper issue. When my kid was in diapers, her mom thought the cloth ones were "healthier." (Don't ask me why.) That lasted about a week. Now, around here, the rich use diaper services and feel all "green" about themselves. Costco's biggest seller is disposable diapers.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    I receive other magazines that don't wrap or protect the valuable cover in any way and they all seem to arrive in readable condition.
    For many years I saved them but at some point, a minute or two before they were digitized I sold the collection for $200 and felt a bit smug. It's a rag, who cares?
    Smart move, selling just before the bottom fell out of the market. If it's anywhere near the water, I think the local libraries are still glad to get full sets, though.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Cleek View Post
    I sent the below to the publisher just now. If you agree, speak up or forever hold your... whatever.
    Mr. Cleek, regardless of whether we agree, or not, you owe Mr Breece a - public - apology. Regardless of how strongly you feel about the subject, your personal attacks on him are entirely unwarranted, not to mention rude and plain old offensive.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Is it “hare” or “hair”?
    I washed my sons cloth diapers on the boat. Rinsed em in our poop bucket, rinsed em again, washed em in seawater with soap, gave em a freshwater rinse and hung em in the rigging. Every day for about a year.
    Andrew Breese is a very pleasant fellow , having met him at Antigua Classics last year.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    I stare at a 'pooter screen all damn day for work; I do not want to stare at one for relaxation. As a good Luddite, I like reading material on paper and in good condition (I, too, have a complete collection of WB). Please, editors and managers at WB, put the magazine in tough recycled paper sleeves or envelopes for mailing if you wish to avoid using plastic. I don't want 'tear-off' covers on my future copies of your good publication.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: WoodenBoat's really, really hare-brained "false cover" idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Garret View Post
    Ah - but they're actually mailed from Vermont - not Maine...
    And yet, here I live in Vermont and still haven't received my copy...
    I was born on a wooden boat that I built myself.

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