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Computer Games Magazine To Shut Down 54

Posted by Zonk
from the there-are-plenty-of-ways-you-can-hurt-a-man dept.
Gamasutra is carrying the sad news that the second-oldest PC gaming magazine is to shut down. TheGlobe.com, owner of Computer Games Magazine and its sister, MMOG-specific magazine Massive, has apparently opted to shutter the outlets as a result of financial troubles. They were saddled with a judgement by a California court in connection to a series of spam messages that went out across the MySpace social site. An SEC filing stated that the company stood to lose at least $40 Million; these shutdowns appear to be the direct result. "Calls to TheGlobe.com's Florida-based publisher Jayson Dubin, also the publisher of CGM and Massive Magazine, were not returned as of press time, with more recent calls to his direct line getting an automated recording indicating that the number had been disconnected. Besides Computer Games Magazine, TheGlobe.com also operates two other wholly-owned subsidiaries: voice over IP solution prover Voiceglo, and online game retail outlet Chips & Bits."
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Computer Games Magazine To Shut Down

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  • Can someone fill us in on the nature of this Myspace spamming? I don't remember hearing about this.
    • Re:Myspace? (Score:4, Informative)

      by LotsOfPhil (982823) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @05:46PM (#18339131)
    • Re:Myspace? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by McFadden (809368) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @07:14PM (#18340407)
      Well a quick look on The Google seems to indicate they weren't entirely innocent.

      I'm confused by this. Spamming is bad, but when a spammer suffers the consequences of their actions, we're supposed to feel sorry for them?
      • by gstoddart (321705)

        I'm confused by this. Spamming is bad, but when a spammer suffers the consequences of their actions, we're supposed to feel sorry for them?

        Well, in this case, it was the parent company who did the spamming. This leads to the closure of a gaming magazine (which, presumably, didn't spam).

        We're happy to see the parent company taking a hit for the spam. Saddened that it has collateral damage of non-sucky things.

        This would be like a computer company we liked going under because, say, Time Warner got dinged for

  • Seems to be a trend (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Sciros (986030) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @05:44PM (#18339095) Journal
    This isn't the first gaming magazine I've seen go (or announce going) away. I guess it just isn't cost-effective enough to operate a gaming magazine nowadays. Sites like Gamespot, IGN, etc. are probably proving to be just too much competition. Perhaps eventually gaming magazines altogether will go the way of the dinosaur.

    That's ok with me, personally. I like magazines for their exclusive screenshots and such, but otherwise they really are redundant with respect to the internet. Nowadays the only mags I find worth looking at anymore are automotive or graphics design mags. The former I subscribe to because they're cheap and have decent writing about pretty cars (and better photos than I see online). The latter are just a good resource for learning how to use graphics software, even though they are way overpriced (especialy the British mags). Plus, girls dig the graphics mags lying around. Not so much the Gamepros.
    • by thesupermikey (220055) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @05:50PM (#18339195) Homepage Journal
      I used to be a regular reader of Computer Gaming World and PC Gamer, but ones broadband came online in my area, it no longer made scene to keep getting print mags. Gamespot, and IGN covered all the same things that the print mags had, but the Demo Disk was by far the major reason i kept getting them. However, with broadband, i no longer even needed the demo disc.

      While the mags will be missed, the internet is far better of a medium for game journalism than print.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        While the mags will be missed, the internet is far better of a medium for game journalism than print.

        I fully understand why gaming mags would succumb to tech first, but can the rest of print journalism be far behind?
        • That depends on the publication's audience.
           
          Will a technically-oriented magazine have a natural tendency to move online? Of course.
           
          Will a magazine about quilting or tulip bulb planting or knitting or tractor repair move online as easily? Not so much.
           
          There will probably always be room for a printed publication laying on someone's table, workbench or truck dashboard. At least, for a very long time yet.
          • I'm willing to read short news pieces and such online. Literary fiction, long academic papers, in-depth work , or art/photo-rich articles, not so much. (For academic articles, I'm likely to print them out and read them.)

            What is a little ironic to me is that there is only one game magazine published in the US of which I would be willing to buy paper editions: The Escapist, which happens to be digital-media only. (In the UK, I would buy Edge; in Japan, I'd buy Continue.)
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by 70Bang (805280)

        Having grown up with hardcopy, I still use it. If I find something whilst online, that's fine.

        Someone was mentioning Game Magazines, it's almost as if they are interchangeable.

        For a long, long, long time, there have been but three PC-only game magazines:

        1. Computer Gaming World
        2. PC Gamer
        3. Computer Games

        Other magazines mentioned PC-based games on their covers and dedicated a minimal number of pages to PC-based until consoles were such a major force.

        Then there was the issue of PC-only games, d
        • Wolfenstein Productivity Virus.... that takes me back. Why can't we find games that... enthralling anymore? I'm in the same boat you are. I swore off console games some time around the Turbo Graphix 16. The reason I gave them up for PC-only gaming was very straight forward for me. There is no game that you can play on multiple systems in which the PC version wasn't the best. The level of flexability in input mapping, settings, and (to relive a classic with a new twist) cheating, was unmatched. Some t
      • by Call Me Black Cloud (616282) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @11:30PM (#18342931)
        I'll take my gaming news in magazine format, thank you. I'm not lugging my laptop into the john with me, but that's where I read gaming mags.
      • by master_p (608214)
        Magazines like 'the Edge' prove you wrong.

        A magazine nowadays can not simply present the games. It needs to include interviews, analysis of the game industry, comparisons between technologies, and other stuff that online editions do not offer.
    • by Skadet (528657) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @05:55PM (#18339271) Homepage
      You are correct in what you are saying; however, it goes even deeper. Magazines, as well as other "old-school media" such as radio, are quickly scrambling to find relavence in the age of new media. I used to work for Clear Channel Radio as a webmaster for KFBK-AM [wikipedia.org], a radio station with a significant history in Sacramento [oldradio.com]. The fact is that people go to the Internet for their information more than they go to TV and Radio -- and if you're not even going to watch TV, what are the odds you'll pick up a magazine?

      I'm more than a little saddened to see historical entities like newspapers (anyone keeping up with Knight-Ridder?) and AM stations going down the tubes. But such is the cost of evolution.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        "I'm more than a little saddened to see historical entities like newspapers (anyone keeping up with Knight-Ridder?) and AM stations going down the tubes. But such is the cost of evolution."

        Um, I know it is the current fad to predict the death of something (like it's gospel or something). But I suggect you read this [pbs.org] before proclaiming something dead.

        BTW here's my contribution to the "3D Mars" story, since Taco has a retarded posting limit. Map the Mars photos to a globe and put a skybox around it. Then with
      • The fact is that people go to the Internet for their information more than they go to TV and Radio -- and if you're not even going to watch TV, what are the odds you'll pick up a magazine?

        Sick of idiotic crap on TV != doesn't read.

        ....au contraire....
        • by Skadet (528657)

          Sick of idiotic crap on TV != doesn't read.

          *shrug*. Everyone I've met who complains that TV is inane impresses me as sanctimonious. How is it that the Discovery Channel is for idiots with square eyes, and discovery.com is for the enlightened? With insane amounts of programming, the only reason to be exposed to "idiotic crap" on TV is to choose to watch it. There's plenty of idiotic crap on the Internet, too, isn't there, but the same people who smugly proclaim their lack of TV dick around on the Internet.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by vux984 (928602)
            *shrug*. Everyone I've met who complains that TV is inane impresses me as sanctimonious. How is it that the Discovery Channel is for idiots with square eyes, and discovery.com is for the enlightened? With insane amounts of programming, the only reason to be exposed to "idiotic crap" on TV is to choose to watch it. There's plenty of idiotic crap on the Internet, too, isn't there, but the same people who smugly proclaim their lack of TV dick around on the Internet. Right.

            No comparison imho. I can consume inte
            • You managed to sum up most of the reply I was about to give. As for the GP's rant? Rather than being "sanctimonious" concerning TV, I'm just bored with it instead. Nothing personal.
            • by KDR_11k (778916)
              Podcasts are the worst. One hour of audio that contains roughly the amount of information that would fit on one A4 page. But instead of downloading a few kBs of text and reading it in five minutes you get a file of several megabytes that takes a looong time to listen to. Never mind that in the age of multimedia you can put images or even videos to illustrate something in your text instead of talking for five minutes to explain what you mean. You can't easily skip uninteresting bits in a podcast like you can
      • I don't watch TV, as it consume too much time/bit. I read magazines, as they actually consume less time/bit than reading online.

        I know I'm not alone (for instance, my girlfriend is the same, and has been since before we met.)

        Eivind.

    • by Hognoxious (631665) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:20PM (#18339655) Homepage Journal

      Perhaps eventually gaming magazines altogether will go the way of the dinosaur.
      They'll turn into birds?
      • by Sciros (986030)
        No no I mean they'll suffer from a major climate change when Yellowstone goes kaboom and slowly die out. Maybe one or two magazines will evolve through this period and become VR feeds you plug directly into your brain, but most will turn into, um, oil reserves.
      • by mobby_6kl (668092)
        No, but we'll burn them and contribute to global warming.
    • by cspariah (958194)
      Hmmm... I don't think it's a safe assumption to pin these closures on anything regarding the gaming magazine industry. Check out Troy Goodfellow's blog entry on the topic [flashofsteel.com]. According to him, the magazines were doing fine, but theglobe.com simply couldn't deal with the massive fines dealt it in the MySpace suit.
    • This isn't the first gaming magazine I've seen go (or announce going) away. I guess it just isn't cost-effective enough to operate a gaming magazine nowadays.

      Yep; Computer and Video Games [wikipedia.org] (C+VG or CVG), the British magazine that had been running since 1981 was shut down in late 2004 (supposedly a temporary rest for a few months, but it hasn't returned, and I don't think it's likely to now). Of course, it was probably more susceptible to competition from the net, being a no-cover-disk, lower-middle market magazine with bite-sized content and aimed mainly at tweens/early-teens. That is, the type of content that can go online most easily, with the type of audience

      • The guides and hints are better found online - the huge maps for games being an annoyance and waste of pages to the reader who doesn't happen to own that specific game. The Prima Guides with their glossy covers and absolute coverage of the games outdo the comparatively homebrew efforts of the magazines. Only the official magazines, and the more attentive mags such as Edge [edge-online.co.uk] and games(TM) [gamestm.co.uk] with more mature, reasonable, industry-centric content will continue to flourish. Although games(TM) do seem to dedicate a
    • by RyoShin (610051)

      Sites like Gamespot, IGN, etc. are probably proving to be just too much competition. Perhaps eventually gaming magazines altogether will go the way of the dinosaur.

      And even those sites are hurting a bit. It's not just the online media outlets, it's the internet in general.

      Back in the day, gaming magazines were pretty much the it source for news about upcoming games, reviews, previews, and demos. Then the internet came along and turned everything on it's head. First gaming magazines migrated to an online pre

  • It Happens (Score:4, Insightful)

    by El Torico (732160) * on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:14PM (#18339575)
    This just in, many horse whip manufacturers are out of business due to the success of the automobile. Industry analysts predict that only niche markets such as horse racing and S&M remain.
  • uh oh (Score:4, Funny)

    by mackil (668039) <[movie] [at] [moviesoundclips.net]> on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:25PM (#18339745) Homepage Journal
    I just renewed my subscription today, not 3 hours before seeing this post. I hope I can get my money back.
    • You could try reversing the charges, if you paid by credit card. Mostly that's for fraudulent/problem vendors. But you could probably make a case to the phone rep that there's no way you'll get the product you ordered.
    • > I just renewed my subscription today, not 3 hours before seeing this post. I hope I can get my money back.

      No you didn't Mackil. I was passing through a chatroom (don't remember which one sorry) and some Russian hacker was boasting he'd used your credit card number. Maybe he was making it up, but if the charge appears on your bill you should mention this.
  • by Gertlex (722812) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:37PM (#18339915)
    I find this news very unfortunate. It was a good read and hadn't degenerated to inane banter and crude statements. The key example I hold up is EGM. That POS is so bad that readers write in complaining about it's degenerative trend and the editors publish these letters and then bash the opinions of their subscribers in direct reply.

    I get the feeling that EGM has a larger subscription base (by far), is suffering sales problems too, and is ultimately resorting to the aforementioned behavior. It seems quality has lost out in the bid for quantity.
  • by Johnny Mnemonic (176043) <[mdinsmore] [at] [gmail.com]> on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @06:52PM (#18340099) Homepage Journal

    "If you spam, you could lose your business".

    Seems pretty reasonable to me, provided they were in fact responsible for the My Space spam.

    Hopefully that becomes the rule instead of the exception.
  • Progress (Score:2, Interesting)

    by 6-tew (1037428)

    It's progress. I still read some gaming and computer magazines, mostly because I like the writing and they are easier to take to the can. The whole notebook on the can thing is awkward and uncomfortable, so it the stare I get from my wife when she sees me heading to the can with a computer... or PDA... or cellphone. She's really quite old-fashioned I now realize.

    When I was in college we had this great discussion about the relevance of print media in the 21 century. This was in 1999 so we had to guess. My p

  • I am so sad... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Giolon (1006069)
    This is the magazine that got me started reading video game magazines when I was a kid. I first received a complimentary issue as part of an order from Chips & Bits, since my brother and I had to order our PC games from there being that our small town had no computer store. It's consistently been the highest quality magazine over the past 10 years that I've had a subscription, with the best articles, the reviews I trusted most, and some of the most interesting columns I've read. While I've picked up
  • Gamasutra: I quit.
    MMORPG Player Dude: Can I have your stuff?
  • History (Score:3, Informative)

    by SirBruce (679714) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @09:35PM (#18341899) Homepage
    Computer Games Magazine was originally known as Strategy Plus, and then changed its name to Computer Games Strategy Plus, before reinventing itself as the new Computer Games fairly recently. Next to Computer Gaming World, it's certainly been my favorite computer games magazine and it will be missed. I'm also disappointed that yet another MMOG-focused magazine, Massive, will be ceasing publication as well.
    • > I'm also disappointed that yet another MMOG-focused magazine, Massive, will be ceasing publication as well.
      Why do you only hear about useful things when they go out of business.

      As a substitute, check out Terra Nova: http://terranova.blogs.com/ [blogs.com]

      It's fairly academic, but good for a no-nonsense read on what's up with MMOGs. Koster, other MMOG bigwigs and academics post there.
  • by snuf23 (182335) on Tuesday March 13, 2007 @09:51PM (#18342053)
    I found the editorial content and voice of Computer Games magazine to be significantly more mature than either of the two remaining major computer game publications (Games for Windows and PC Gamer). They offered some excellent articles discussing the nature of games as well as a very good reader submitted column.
    I wondered how they managed to pay their bills seeing as they had few advertisers. I guess younger readers prefer magazines with less insight and more fart jokes.
    I will be very sad to see them go and boy what a colossal fuckup with the spam.
  • OF the three PC-centric videogame mags in the USA computer Games has been thinner than PCWorld or CGW aka Games for Windows Magazine. For a few years now they've been trying to broaden the audience with crap like "Now Playing" which was an attempt to cover music and movies, which they tried to spin off into a magazine, and most recently with "Massive" which also spun off of CGM. Their reviews have often been a month behind the other mags too.

    That being said, they were more thoughtful and had better covera
  • Who gets the money? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I didn't RTFA all the way through, but if Myspace gets 62 million, does any of the end users who actually received the spam and may/may not have been influenced get compensation? Or does it all go back into Myspace pockets?
  • How sad. Just a little spam. But I guess if you got money and spam, someone is going to come after you.

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