Subscribing to hell

I’m frustrated.  Pissed off.  Annoyed.  Anyone in media/marketing/PR knows that a good review of the nation’s news (whether fluffy or furiously serious) is pretty critical. I spend a good portion of my day scanning my reader and what hits my desk. 


I read a lot of mags and newspapers, from lifestyle and handbag fodder, to a range of local and international business and trade media and my monthly HBR and Vanity Fair fixes. 


And even though I could probably motivate for voucher copies of local titles or borrow copies from the media consultancy downstairs, I actually subscribe to each and every one, feeling like I’m doing my bit in supporting the industry.


But I’m not surprised traditional media are taking such a beating from the new.  Their subscription services, on the whole, Suck (with the capital S.)  Avusa I’m particularly looking at you. 


In the four years since I’ve been in my current job, I only notice when my subscriptions have expired when I stop receiving my copies.  (Time and HBR start reminding me and offering me free watches 6 months in advance, bless them.) Then I have to get into a protracted argument, often lasting weeks, to get an invoice so that my accounts department can pay (no, a proforma won’t do. And no, I’m not going to ‘pretend I paid you’ if I get an invoice. An invoice is not a receipt, you imbecile).


Then I have to chase up and make sure the delivery starts again. I kid you not.  And I don’t have one easy subscription number for my Jo’burg and Cape Town subs to FM and The Business Day. No, I have 4 different numbers and so have to go through this 4 times a year.  And so my deep reluctance to subscribe to The Times, amongst others, even though it would be the only way to get it in Cape Town.


I’m tempted just to can the lot, sign up to whatever Newsletters/RSS feeds I can and to hell with the rest.  For good.



2 Responses to “Subscribing to hell”

  1. 1 Sarah October 10, 2008 at 11:45 am

    I know!! I love it when publishers talk about South African’s not having a ‘subscription culture’. Puhleez. They don’t have a subcription sales culture. ew subscibe inspite of them – not becuase of them.
    good rant there love 🙂

  2. 2 katewolters October 10, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    What? I’ve never heard that rubbish excuse before. I’m so tired of having the same arguments every year. Honestly, the luvvie at Avusa Jo’burg was arguing with me that an invoice was a receipt…what reflection on the brand I get my business news from? Ai carrumba. I wanted to weep. And we still have to fax proof of payment. Can’t just email the online banking confirmation…noooo, fax it is. Fax?

    (Can you tell I’m still ranting)

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