Those of us who are old enough to fondly remember long hours in the library reading books and magazines are probably a little nonplussed at the idea of reading publications online. The fact is, however, that for an entire generation of up and coming readers, reading on a screen is not only simple, it’s desirable. Case in point - the Kindle (a reading device that allows books etc. to be downloaded for viewing) is a very big seller at precisely because it is portable and allows users to read regardless of where they are. Other reading devices are out there as competitors to the Kindle. And more are likely on the way with even more bells and whistles. Although Hart is not offering a device at present for reading magazines, supplements, and reports, the company has had its magazines online for some time. If you’re interested and prefer reading from your computer screen, you can subscribe to the online version of E&P any time. And if you get the hard copy of E&P, you can always do research on and access the past issues that are archived. I’ve always thought of this as an “extra,” a service for our readership, an added bonus for E&P subscribers. If what I’ve been reading of late is true, I have been wrong. Reading the magazine online is not an extra for readers. It is a necessity. And younger readers apparently want to read everything that way. According to a supplement to Folio magazine, this year will see the transformation of the digital magazine, “driven by an exploding mobile device market, including e-readers and tablets.” Because of this revolutionary change, publishers are starting to look at producing digital editions for these new platforms while they continue to print traditional hard copies of their magazines. With so much information available online, it is tough to compete in the magazine world if you only exist in print. And frankly, since it isn’t possible to put audio and video in the magazine, a story in print just can’t deliver the depth of an online article. At E&P, we’ve put all sorts of content on our site – data and tables, audio and video files, links to additional content. And we want people to take advantage of that content, which means we need to make it easily accessible. According to President and CEO of Skram Media Mark Crowther, who is quoted in the Folio article, “We need to be offering as many entry points to our content as we can if we are to grow the audiences.” In short, our information needs to be available anywhere and anytime. Nobody is interested in waiting for paper. To be truthful, this transformation is actually kind of exciting. It has changed our world of monthly news to one of news by the minute. It is a constant focus on information in any form at any time. Although we continue to produce a technology publication that fills a niche in the oil and gas industry, we have become providers of all manner of related industry information. As our readership has evolved, so have we. I never thought I would be part of such a revolution. The fact is that I like paper. I like the smell of old books. And I like touching and holding a book while I’m reading. I like getting the first copy of the new issue of E&P and paging through it. I don’t get that same feeling when I look at it online. That said, when I look at the scope of what E&P can offer online, the depth of the content available at a keystroke or two, and the variety of information accessible through, it seems to me we’re moving in the right direction. I hope you’ve taken the time to visit our site and that you think so too.