A number of Staff Writers at UK PC Magazine PC Zone, once noted for it’s rather wild child approach to gaming (Who can Forget Cruelty Zoo? – i bet WH Smiths haven’t), have walked out on Future Publishing.
The Staff Members who have walked out are Editor Will Porter, Former Editor Jamie Sefton, Disc Editor Ed Zitron, Jon “Log” Blyth and some unnamed person from the art department.
According to RAM Raider:
The page count and budget have both been slashed. Again. This means the staff writers are going to have to take on more work for the same money, and won’t be able to assign as much out to freelancers. Is this saving being passed onto the readers? Is it fuck – the lower page count means they’re getting less for their money.
The publication frequency is going up to 14 issues a year. Again, this equates to more work for the team, but they’ll still be getting the same money. It also means the regular readers will have to pay for one extra issue a year to get the same amount of content.
The hardware section is written by the same guy who does PC Format’s and PC Gamer’s bit. Once upon a time, PC Zone used to have a reputation as the daring wild child with strong opinions that had no truck with Gamer’s wishy-washy sixth form philosophising. This has naturally been diluted beyond belief since the mag was bought out by Future, but now that chunks of the mag are going to be written by someone from Gamer, any personality it once had is now warmly dribbling down its inside thigh.
Disc Editor Ed Zitron isn’t being replaced because the cover disc is going to be handled in the same way as hardware – so one guy will be dealing with the coasters for several mags. Again, an opportunity could have been taken here to ditch the disc (which died the day everyone got broadband) and lower the price of the mag. It’s no secret that they cost barely pennies, and are only there to justify the fucking silly prices Future charge.
Also according to RAM Raider, the only staff left are the much loved Steve Hogarty and a new fellow called David Brown. No new editor has been chosen as of yet.
Speaking to Games Industry.biz James Binns, Puiblishing Director of Future’s Games output said:
“Current Editor Will Porter is still in place while we find a replacement, PC Zone stalwarts Will Porter and Jonathan Blyth both intend to contribute to PC Zone on a freelance basis and we wish them the best of success”.
It’s such a shame that a once essential Magazine such as PC Zone is going down the drain in such a fashion, but really the writing has been on the wall since the Future Takeover and quite frankly, i for one am surprised it took this long.
Farewell PC Zone, you will be sorely missed.