Last week I asked a question and I got a great response from the blogosphere.
The question I asked was, "When was the last time you bought a Beckett magazine?"
Let's take a look at the 52 responses.
Never - 7
1992 - 5
1993 - 1
1994 - 1
1995 - 2
1997 - 1
1998 - 3
1999 - 1
2002 - 2
2003 - 1
2006 - 3
2007 - 2
2008 - 1
2009 - 3
2010 - 3
2011 - 1
2012 - 3
2013 - 1
2014 - 1
2015 - 3
2016 - 4
2017 - 4
Seven respondents have never purchased a Beckett. Let's remove them from the rest of the data.
That leaves 45 people who have actually bought a Beckett.
Four of the 45 either have a current subscription or have bought the magazine at some point this year. So we'll remove them from the equation as well.
Now we're at 41 people who have bought a Beckett, but it's been at least 8 months ago.
78.04% of people who responded haven't purchased a Beckett magazine in the last 5 years and for more than half, 53.65%, it's been more than 10 years.
If you're like me, and I'm assuming you are, because you're reading a blog written about baseball cards, then I think it's safe to assume that you're obsessed with baseball cards and with a monthly magazine dedicated to baseball cards it's hard to believe that 78% of us haven't bought one in the past 5 years.
I used to love Beckett. I never had a subscription, but I would buy them on a regular basis and I collected those with my favorite players on the cover. I would even check them out from the library as well. There was a time when the price guide was important to me, but more than that I loved reading about cards and other collectibles. I enjoyed seeing a breakdown of a new release, reading about star players, former players, and errors cards. I loved seeing other peoples collections. I loved the artwork on the front and back inside covers.
I never really left the hobby, but I wasn't as active as I am now between 2000 - 2009, so when I found others baseball blogs and returned full steam in 2009 I started looking at Beckett again and was instantly disappointed. This disappointment came from many of the same reasons you all described in your responses to my question.
The price guide portion of the magazine is irrelevant and the articles are almost non existent. Not sure if you've noticed, but my url is www.betterthanbeckett.blogspot.com because what I loved about Beckett was a way to connect with other collectors. I loved reading peoples questions and comments in the Readers Write section. I loved seeing homemade cards that other collectors had made. I loved seeing pictures and reading the article about Super Collectors.
Everything that once made Beckett great in my eyes was now gone, or at least had been whittled down to near extinction.
When I selected www.betterthanbeckett.blogspot.com as my web address it was because the blogosphere had replaced Beckett for me. I think this is true for many of us. My blog title is It's like having my own Card Shop because I really feel like my blog and the blogosphere gives me an opportunity to look at cards, discuss cards, and buy and trade cards just like I could back in the day at my local card shop.