Skateboarder subscribers received a letter with their February/March 2013 copies informing them that the issue is the last print version of the title before it goes digital only.
GrindMedia, the parent company of Skateboarder, says in the letter that it will focus on a free “digital/online video magazine” going forward. Subscribers were given the option of trading their Skateboarder subscriptions for either Surfer or Snowboarder subs, or a refund for the balance of their subscription.
However, according to Skateboarder Publisher Jamey Stone, the print version of the magazine won’t be going away entirely. Instead of focusing on subscribers, beginning April 1, the title will be available for purchase solely in specialty skate retailers for $4.95. Stone says they plan to do six print issues and six digital issues annually, with the digital versions available for free online and featuring around 10% different content than the print mags.
According to Stone, the following letter was a legal formality and they weren’t at liberty to discuss the full details of the business model at the time. “We’re really turning this on its head,” explains Stone. “We’re thinking digitally first and print second.”