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Monday, April 13, 2009

OPEN for you…

…but are you open for this?

That is the question which is there all around on hoardings, newspapers everywhere. A weekly magazine OPEN, as the first product in the pipe line of their print venture by Saregama Pvt Ltd. is launched last week across the nation. It is going to be general interest magazine by touching every serious & trivial aspect of your life. The question of your openness arises after looking at its USP- Its different! And irony is that people resist for change and they are not open for it.

Though (ignoring the content proportion for once) ‘India Today’, ‘Outlook’, ‘The Week’ are also in the same genre but as Editor Sandipan Deb clears its unique positioning in his edit note for the launch issue that OPEN will not be doing something new but for sure they will do the same- differently! Well, even for the same positioning ‘Tehelka’ & ‘The Caravan’ also tried and they could not do major.

Being a very wide scope of coverage it becomes challenging for such magazines to define their personality, so is with OPEN. At a glance, launch issue is carrying variety of reading material, well enough in quantity for a week. Edit structure is broadly divided into three sections only- Small World (FOB- what is happening around), Features (main section- Lifestyle, current affairs, politics, culture, technology… everything!) and the Mindspace (BOB- Books, Cinema, Arts & Leisure).

Main section has lack of clarity, which is quite visible in its weak structure. This section, if it not defined clearly, has lot of scope to cover on one hand, on other hand it has a big threat of getting to scattered that magazine may lose its focus (even it has a broad focus).

Selection of stories & writing itself is commendable that makes OPEN an interesting reading literature. Subbing & proofing has left some errors on a few of pages.

Cover of inaugural issue of OPEN is not as great designed cover as it should be to reflect the personality of the magazine, the philosophy of the OPEN. For the time, let’s assume that is because of the cover story but that also is not impressive.

These kinds of magazines have lots of scope of design, illustrations, graphics and imaging. On few pages, various design elements are smartly used which adds elegance to a page and on the contrary a few pages have unnecessary usages of styles, typo and other elements. It seems that entire magazine is designed in parts because each article appears great but if you go page-by-page, you can see lots of inconsistency that leaves a bad impression on reader.

Overall, it is quite neatly designed magazine.

Pictures in the magazine are come out very well because of good prepress work and the printing quality. Colors of various boxes, various design elements and photographs are come well. Only on some pages it has registration problems.

Being a weekly magazine of 74 pages, it is good quantity of reading material that is priced at Rs30. Odd size & perfect binding of OPEN makes it ‘zara hatke’ magazine in its genre. That is what exactly goes well with the positioning of this magazine.

In the first issue, selection of articles, the writing and the variety of topics impressed me a lot. If it is defined clearly and is tweaked a little bit at some points, it can create its own space in the crowd of so called general interest magazines. But you have to be open for this difference first!

Content .....................: ●●●◐○
Design & Layout ........: ●●●○○
Printing ......................: ●●●◐○
Product ......................: ●●●○○
Value for Money .........: ●●●●◐
‘VIRDI’CT ....................: ●●●◐○

How to use ‘VIRDI’CT..??
●○○○○ Browse & leave it
●●○○○ Borrow & Read it
●●●○○ Buy it occasionally
●●●●○ Buy regularly
●●●●● Subscribe it now!!!

1 comment:

Asif said...

i liked the mag too...esp. the emag is amazing...perhaps the best emag software i have seen till now...amazing...i will subscribe the content...creative writing is alwys on top of the list...