There are big changes afoot at ecohome, the most notable being that this will be our last stand-alone print issue. We think that’s a good thing and here’s why:
You have most likely seen the reports declaring that print journalism is dead. It’s not, but what we have found, after a year of constant examination of our content delivery, is that print is not dynamic enough to meet the needs of our audience. You are constantly on the move and learning, and we want to provide you with the information you need to do your job better—across multiple platforms and mediums, when you need it.
With your preferences in mind, last year the ecohome and ecostructure teams began to focus heavily on how to improve our digital presence.
Much as old-school project teams worked in silos, handing off a project sequentially from one participant to another—from architect, to engineer, to builder, to rater, to client—with little cross-collaboration, we found that we, too, were disconnected. Just as a house’s environmental performance improves when deep, ongoing collaboration starts on Day One of project conception, we found that our digital and print operations would greatly benefit from greater integration.
While ecohome and ecostructure, our two brands that are dedicated to high-performance green building, reach the full array of participants in a typical sustainable project, we had split the audiences so that they were not able to interact with each other easily. So we created ecobuildingpulse.com, the new digital hub for both ecohome and ecostructure. We also united the newsletters for the two publications into ecobuilding pulse, which now hits your inbox twice a week.
We’re leveraging the seemingly infinite possibilities of digital content. We’ve streamlined our web design, adopting a bloglike platform for a faster, easier read; bulked up multimedia offerings, such as slideshows and videos, to examine high-performance projects and building practices in greater depth; and greatly increased the frequency of our content output to provide numerous daily postings. Online content delivery not only allows us to provide more depth to our original content, but also allows us to bring you top-notch information from the subject matter experts at our sister publications, including Architect, Builder, Remodeling, and Residential Architect.
All of these online efforts allow us to connect with you on a daily, even hourly basis. If you include Twitter and other social media, we’re talking minute to minute. We think these are all good things, and hope you do, too.
So, what does all of this mean for print subscribers? You’ll still have access to all of ecohome’s regular columns and content. It’s just that most of it will appear first online, where you can bookmark it, tweet it, share it, and comment on it to your heart’s content. And I highly encourage all of these activities.
You will still receive two print issues this year—the Fall and Winter editions—but neither will be a traditional issue of ecohome. Indeed, after this issue, your subscription will be transferred to ecostructure. You may read that sentence and want to cancel your subscription. If this is the case, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and put “cancel EcoHome subscription” in the subject line. But, I sincerely hope you do not, because the swap comes with a twist—literally. When you open your mailbox in August and November, you’ll see an issue of ecostructure, but if you flip the magazine over, you will find an issue of ecohome. Talk about integrated design: You’ll be getting two print brands combined into one high-performance package.
And what a package it will be: The Fall issue will showcase the winner of the fourth-annual Hanley Award (a $50,000 prize for leadership in sustainable housing, whose past recipients are Edward Mazria of Architecture 2030, Alex Wilson of BuildingGreen and the Resilient Design Institute, and Sam Rashkin of the Department of Energy). And the Winter issue will be our Vision 2020 special edition, which is the culmination of our year-long research project into the future of high-performance housing, guided by a hand-selected group of 10 outstanding industry leaders (for more, check out ecobuildingpulse.com/vision-2020).
Stick with us as we evolve into an ever-better resource for the high-performance residential building community. With all this talk of integration, however, there is still one main component lacking: your feedback. We hope to hear from you regularly, which will help us to meet your needs. We will be conducting a reader survey over the coming months to garner your input, so keep an eye out for that, and feel free to contact us at any time.
Change often isn’t easy, but we strongly believe that these shifts in ecohome content delivery are key to our future as a relevant brand for you, our audience. I look forward to continuing this journey with you.