LET TechGuides = (printed OR digital) magazine + (email OR (email + telephone + skype) OR on-site) support1
Following his recent campaign to raise funds to publish a book about the history of Acorn Computers, David Bradforth has again turned to crowd funding website Indiegogo to raise funds for another project. This time, the goal is to launch a new magazine and support scheme, called TechGuides.
David explained that the website for TechGuides has existed for a number of months – the domain itself appears to have been registered at the end of January of this year, and the first article was published on the site on 1st February, with those following seemingly being a mix of original material written by David, and older items republished from other sources to which David holds some rights – and while it attracts a reasonable amount of traffic, he hadn’t yet decided what the purpose of the website was to be.
The purpose David has settled on is for the website to be the online home to a magazine and support group, with the aim to “help you get the most out of your technology” – and the campaign is therefore a means to obtain the funding needed to get the whole thing off the ground.
The proposed TechGuides magazine will be bi-monthly and will come in either digital or printed format and, according to David’s summary and announcement, will include free use of an email-based support service – though there does appear to be an option that doesn’t include it – with the aim to resolve any problems within 48 hours, provided that it is something that can be dealt with by email – which probably rules out asking “Why is my email not working?”
The support arrangement can be extended by stumping up more money, to one of two levels. The first additional support option is an annual agreement that includes contact by email, telephone and Skype, and allows for up to three “personal sessions” – so that, hopefully, any issues can be resolved remotely, and therefore it will be possible to ask why your email isn’t working, because it’ll be possible to ask by telephone or using Skype.
The second option is an annual agreement for personal on-site support, though this is limited to the London/Kent/South East England area, and allows for up to three personal support sessions in the evenings or on weekends – so if email, Skype and telephone all go down, er, you won’t be able to call for help! (I’m not sure I thought these examples through very well when I started writing this! Oops! Um. Quite. Anyway…)
David has previous experience in the world of publishing as a magazine editor and a technical writer, and cites a number of magazines he has been involved in, such as eBay Advisor, MacFormat, and PC Essentials, to show that the has the contacts, background and experience to bring his idea to life.
The target for the Indiegogo campaign is £3,000, which David believes will allow for the production of the six issues of the printed magazine, as well as the provision of (and costs associated with) the support service over twelve months and, as with any typical crowd funding campaign, there are a number of options (aka ‘perks’) to persuade people to commit different amounts, and get something back commensurate with that commitment – such as the different levels of support, and the printed versus digital version of the magazine, as noted above.
The cheapest perk on offer is for just £15, and the reward is six issues of the magazine in digital format, with no support option, moving up to a £30 offer which includes the six digital issues, and the twelve month email support option. The first option for the printed magazine comes in at £50 for the UK, with other perks and prices catering for those further afield.
To get the telephone and Skype support, the price is £100, which includes the digital version of the magazine, and the perk notes that the support is for four instances, dropping to the three David speaks of in the announcement if it continues beyond year one – and to get the on-site support (which is limited to three instances, as well as to the London/Kent South East England area) the price is £150.
For RISC OS users, there is also an option that gets six issues of the digital magazine, and six additional unspecified RISC OS publications – so that’s twelve publications in total. The price for this is £30, and this perk makes no mention of the email support option, but that makes sense given the price for this compared to the £15 digital only, and £30 digital plus support perks.
While I wish David every success in this campaign, I feel duty bound to point out that, just as with his campaign for the Potted History of Acorn Computers book, this one is also set as flexible funding. This means that should the campaign not meet its target of £3,000 by the deadline of 11th October, David will still receive the funds raised.
- That isn’t a line of real BBC BASIC, so it won’t work – don’t bother trying it.