Monday, March 4, 2024

The final death of CQ Magazine

The website for CQ Magazine has been down for several days now and users of their domain for email addresses now report that those addresses are no longer functional.

One columnist reports that they have been on hold since October 2023.

The demise of CQ Magazine has been a long time in the making with intermittently missed issues being the norm for over four years now. 

I had an online subscription to the magazine for two years and thoroughly enjoyed each issue. The articles were top-notch and covered a more diverse range of topics than QST. It was also refreshingly clean of the politics of ham radio - I'm not so much put-off by that topic but am bored to tears by it, and probably won't be renewing my ARRL membership.

So "good-bye" to CQ, now gone the way of Ham Radio, Ham Radio Horizons and 73 Magazine.

The good ones die off; mediocrity lives on.

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7 comments:

  1. Back in the day, I was a big fan oh both Ham Radio and Ham Radio Horizons. Two top notch publications!

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  2. Good morning John I was very close about 5 months ago to getting a CQ subscription but held off and glad I did. I wonder what will happen to the CQ WW and CQ WPX contests?
    73
    Mike
    VE9KK

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    1. During the time I had a digital subscription, I received all issues. Now even that's gone so you made the right decision not to subscribe. Not only are the contests at risk but so are the awards, mainly WAZ. Maybe the ARRL will pick that up...?

      73,
      John

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  3. I completely agree with you about CQ content, John. It was top-notch.
    I can tell you that CQ writers did it all for the love of radio.
    One criticism I had of CQ publications is that they always agreed to pay writers, but very, very rarely did. I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that they only paid 10-20% of the time and often that was only after a writer repeatedly asked for promised compensation. One friend took them to court to be paid for several years of promised pay (they paid it all only after being served papers). I was never paid for my two articles and just let it go. In truth, no one gets rich off of writing for radio publications--it's really a token amount--but not paying writers doesn't sit well. Makes one feel used. CQ editors and writing staff (many are dear friends) were all amazing people--it was really the ownership side that fell through. They didn't like paying the printer either, which is one of the reasons print copies sort of sputtered.
    This is one of the things I love about The Spectrum Monitor magazine (which, in my opinion, is the best out there). Ken Rietz is the editor and owner and--without fail--writers are paid like clockwork at the beginning of the month of publication. He runs an amazing e-publication and is a man of integrity.
    Ken used to be the editor of The Monitoring Times magazine--another publication that always paid writers as agreed.
    Still, as you say, I'm sad to see CQ go because I do think the articles, writers, and editors were all top-notch.

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    1. Yes, I remember reading of these complaints years ago. Regardless of the small amount of money involved (in articles accepted for publication), contracts need to be honored.

      I agree with you about Spectrum Monitor (and Monitoring Times before that) - always a great magazine with a diverse range of topics within the radio hobby covered, not just ham radio. Those who got into the hobby due to the "magic of radio" will probably find many of the non-ham topics quite interesting. As you know, issues can be bought individually, making it easy to give the magazine a trial run.

      73,
      John

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  4. A big problem with CQ was their reluctance to pay authors contributing to their magazine. I was never paid for my article on the AT1011 antenna published in April 2012. Riley Hollingsworth pulled out as a columnist after learning from various sources of the editors reluctance.

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  5. I have a life subscription to CQ (transferred from Ham Radio Magazine). The last print magazine I received was February 2023; I was given access to digital copies thru October 2023, then nothing. I really enjoyed the publication and the articles/writers, many times better than QST. I even had my own article published in the January 2021 issue. I never was reimbursed for it but really didn't care; it was nice to see my work in print. I sort of knew CQ was having financial problems, so I figured it was a worthy donation to help keep the publication afloat. Very sorry to see CQ go under. It will and is already being missed.

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