Flipping for FLYP

September 12, 2009 at 9:40 pm (Uncategorized)

Jim Gaines’ FLYP magazine is a visual smorgasbord for anyone who logs onto the fairly new online magazine.  Featured in Poynter as the newest way to tell stories online, the magazine offers a multitude of ways to get news and stories. FLYP is a biweekly magazine, which is only published online and is meant to cover the realities occurring in America. True to their websites nature, even the “about” section offers a video explaining about FLYP.

found at: https://i1.wp.com/beta.images.theglobeandmail.com/archive/00039/NYBZ104-Flyp_Medi_39422gm-a.jpg

FLYP is involved with all the major forms of technologically savvy ways to express information. The website includes blogs, videos, podcasts, and even a newsletter. Gaines’ approach can be cited in the Poynter article where he discusses how he has reinvented storytelling, and how his team is constantly striving to try and get the story “off the page” (see Poynter article).

The website is filled with videos as well as written stories, which are appealing to those who do not want to read through an entire article. Another interesting feature of the online magazine is the ability to comment on any article that is published. Upon first bring up the website, I clicked on an article about a camp that brings Palestinian and Israeli children together. Expecting a typical article to pop onto the page, like one would see on an online newspaper, I was surprised to see an entirely different window pop up and an interactive magazine fill the screen. The magazine was filled with pictures, a comment button, and the ability to click through the other articles in that week’s publication.

From the article about the camp, I jumped then to an article which featured a video about Homaru Cantu, a chef who grows algae in his kitchen. The next page contained various thumbnail pictures of dishes from his restaurant, which expanded themselves and were described in detail once clicked on.  Only intending on reading the one article, the abundance of visual aides kept me reading. I went on to read about Cantu’s restaurant, the apparent “Sexual Evolution” that is occurring, and watch a video on an artist who uses cardboard to sculpt. Each article was more aesthetically pleasing than the next and got me interested in topics I’d ordinarily pass over had they just been plainly printed.

Gaines mentions in the Poynter article how at other publications, print is the main medium that is chosen to express a story. However, at FLYP each medium is considered for each story and the one that expresses the story best is chosen, sometimes there even are multiple mediums used to express a single story. Gaines cites that this is the best way to engage the readers, and he has found this out through his reader feedback. Gaines also cites how the web keeps him in constant contact with his readers, saying how when he worked for TIME magazine he never read readers’ letters, but now as an online publication he is constantly listening to his readers and what they like and dislike.

Essentially, FLYP has done its job in trying to attract readers to their magazine, as I was a fan ten minutes into exploring the website. Jim Gaines seems to identify with his readers and understand that times are changing and that the way news is delivered must change with it.

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