WELCOME to the Wednesday blog – each week filled by Angler’s Mail magazine’s HQ, focussing on happenings in the wonderful world of fishing, including latest tackle.
This week’s Angler’s Mail HQ blog is by editor Tim Knight.
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INTERNET ANGLING IS ADDICTIVE – IN A GOOD WAY!
AS I WAS sat in a minicab the other day, I had a weird conversation. My Scottish cabbie, after grilling me on what I did for a living, recounted how he was “Into golf, big time. Fifth in the world, currently, but I need to play more. I don’t have time for fishing.”
FIFTH, in the WORLD? And driving me from the airport in snarled up Glasgow traffic, in driving rain and fog, in a Ford Mondeo?
“Aye. Fifth, beaten that Tiger Woods loads of times.”
By this time I smelt a rat. “I play on Xbox,” he admitted, with a glint in his eye. Not coyly because he was embarrassed at being a computer games addict, but delighted because he could tell I was interested, and suddenly awake after a very long day.
Now, here’s the rub. My genial Derek McCabbie was getting his kicks out of a screen addiction. He had “playing partners” in all parts of the world, never mind a remote part of Argyll, where he was from. He was quite capable of stepping outside onto the fine fairways and gorgeous greens of Scotland, but he preferred to stay in his lounge, alone, living a virtual world of sport.
It made me wonder: how many anglers are the same? Is fishing’s many web pleasures equally addictive online? Has what is available, especially during days and evenings of bad weather, kept people indoors, or enthused them to get out more?
Having the spent the past two years growing Angler’s Mail’s online presence in various ways, often seven days a week, even when in bed with the missus on a Sunday morning, I could see where Xbox Derek was coming from.
I see the same names on the same angling-related websites, almost all the time. The addicts, and below them the regular users, and the occasionals. But that said, these numbers are growing. Some get bored – maybe the Facebook bubble will burst – but more take their place.
Like a drug, online fixes are a pleasure we now all come to take as part of our everyday life. After all, you (reading this) must be an addict, a regular user, or a dabbler…
Adding the NEW digital version of Angler’s Mail
Angler’s Mail has this past week launched a digital version, for Apple’s amazing iPads and also for the cool Kindle Fire.
It’s exciting times. At heart I am a print, a paper man. But there’s no denying the higher resolution and potential for new state-of-the art (and increasingly affordable) viewing electronic platforms.
My top tip, and someone in my company may slap me for this, is to suggest that you subscribe to Angler’s Mail mag pronto.. to get it in print delivered to your door and now digitally to your iPad for no extra cost!
That’s right, by buying a heavily discounted print magazine subscription you can claim the iPad version without paying anything on top. Hashtag RESULT!
You can, as some AM fans have asked, get the mag purely in digital firm now. To do this, go to iTunes and take out a long-term subscription to Angler’s Mail magazine – also a top deal! And, should you wish, from there you can also claim the print mag by delivered subscription.
This, my friends, is just the start…!
PROS & CONS OF INTERNET ANGLING
All this talk of digital angling got me thinking about where we currently are with angling via the wonderful world wide web (or “nerdy web” as a colleague mocked 15 years ago). Let’s take a quick look…
Community – sites like Angler’s Mail Facebook and some forums are like angling clubs used to be. Likeminded folk on your screen, 24-7.
Video – YouTube can show you anything anytime, and a few specialist sites (check out Angler’s Mail TV ) share selected vids, plus home produced content.
Out of date information – many sites out there were set up with big plans and best intentions. Then left to wither… but sadly stay alive, misleading people every day.
Instant experts – self-publishing, much though I’m with Citizen Smith’s “Power to the People” ethic, has grown a tribe, a growing tribe, of over-opinionated know-it-alls. Clever dicks, who like any of us, do NOT know it ALL.
Trolls – I’m loathe to give the abusive cyber knobs and persistent negative posters a mention. But they exist, and are a pain in the arris. Anyone connected with a popular Facebook or forum knows how keyboard warriors waste time, and sometimes undo good work for the majority.
The internet has very rapidly changed angling. It’s hard to think that a decade ago most anglers had barely if ever touched a keyboard, let alone mastered touch-screens.
Tens, no hundreds, of thousands of anglers have become hooked on social media just as much as, say, reading the newspaper when sat on the bog was a part of life during the century of more before.
A few minutes spent surfing online can improve your catches by getting a nugget of local info or specialised pointer, and enhance your angling life.
This is why Angler’s Mail has embraced the change. And now our magazine comes in both print form, and digital. Plus our hugely popular extensions into Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and this rapidly-improving and growing website.
Share this post with your mates on Facebook and Twitter. Comment with your views on what you get out of online fishing.
LIKES OF THE WEEK
Internet breakthroughs and milestones - Angler’s Mail becoming available on digital sets a pace others will struggle to catch up with. And we also reached 20,000 fans on Facebook (biggest outside of the USA) and 4,000 followers on Twitters. Trumpet-blowing aside, hats off to Anglers’ Net – run by my old cyber mate Elton Murphy – for notching 40,000 Facebook fans. Like.
New book releases – yes, the inky form of print ain’t dead. Not by a long way. Inspirational figures of yesteryear, Mr Crabtree creator Bernard Venables and “tell it as it was” matchman Frank Barlow aren’t around today, sadly. But they live on in print, in fresh formats and I am sure they’d be proud of the new releases in their honour. Modern classics.
Both books (Crabtree, pictured left) are reported on fully in Angler’s Mail magazine.
Fox “hunting” – we have a special report on an incident some nationals reported, hysterically. Yes, an angler did get attacked, and it really did leave him shaken. Not nice. But the chances of you also getting attacked by a fox on the banks is less than a dog having a go, and the advice given in our magazine’s story will also help. Foxes, like all wild creatures near the water, enhance our lives as anglers. Let’s not get carried away.
VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Just one new one here this week, but it’s part of the biggest deal to hit fishing tackle – ever!
Sports Direct are about to be BIG in fishing tackle, with hundreds of stores. And the face of the brand they will go big on – Dunlop – is Robson Green.
Here Robson gives a special interview to kick-start the Dunlop moves…