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I have been reading the economist for over a year now, initially on their app which provides the many stories for free. This is a great option for those of use who do not have a lot of time and want to just read the main articles. I found it a great way to spend a Saturday morning. For those who are put off by its name, the economist offers far more than an economic perspective of the world. The Economist offers a different perspective on world news, political stories and financial analysis. I like the economist as it a nice middle ground between the biased feel of sky and fox and the staid feel of cnn and bbc, both in their online and tv versions. There is always an interesting mix of stories in the economist. The app is free but will not provide you with the full scope of the economist and I feel that buying the economist on subsription is definitely worth as you can get a lot of bang for your buck. However I would say if your time is limited the free economist app might be more appropriate as you would definitely want a bit of free time during the week to read the economist cover to cover. The economist is definitely worth picking up.
It was my husband who introduced me to The Economist and I have been a devotee for around 5 years. We have a subscription now which costs £27 per quarter, and it's great to hear the magazine hit the doormat on a Friday. I have never been much of a fan of daily newspapers, finding the broadsheets too large to handle and not enjoying the inky smell on your fingers, and the tabloids are just appalling - celebrity gossip, product placement and incitement to riot all dressed up as "news". The Economist is the perfect solution - it's a magazine so convenient in size with no inky paper, and it only deals with newsworthy topics - not a celebrity story in sight. The fact that it is weekly rather than daily is also an advantage, as each story is reviewed fully with research behind it and real insight applied, rather than a quick few hundred words belted out to meet a deadline with no understanding of the issue. In this day and age most of us get the headlines from TV or the Internet, so what we need is in depth analysis of the many issues we face, not just massive fonts telling us the latest scandals.
The magazine has a structure that is pretty much unvarying. First up are the Politics and Business pages which have short paragraphs summing up the week's main news items in those two areas. Next are the Leader articles, the first of which is advertised on the front cover. The magazine has truly international coverage, so the Leader articles in the July 23rd-29th 2011 edition look at the dilemma facing Rupert Murdoch, the need for economic reform in India, the career of Hugo Chavez, mandatory quotas for women executives and the "one-child" policy in China. These articles are always fantastically informative, and it is so refreshing to see genuinely important issues up front in a news publication.
The Letters page is next and I have to admit I rarely read it, but as the readership is as international as the coverage you do get to see views from around the world rather than the predictable "disgusted of Tunbridge Wells". There is a Digital Highlights page advertising items to be found on The Economist's website, and then come the jobs pages. These pages are called "Executive Focus" and for readers like me who do not aspire much higher than the average office job these pages are pure entertainment. Where else can you find adverts to be a Program Leader for a think tank in Canada, Director General of the Commonwealth Business Council or Vice President for Sustainability at a gold mining company?
The Briefing comes next and this is usually a further exploration of the topic in the first Leader article. Many of the articles in The Economist are accompanied by tables and graphs showing the relevant facts and figures, and the articles do deal mainly in facts and ideas that can be backed up by research. If an opinion is expressed it tends to be along the lines of "this publication believes" so you are left in no doubt that you are being told the views of the writers, rather than the writing style being consistently slanted in order to push you towards the side of the journalist. It is also worth noting that the writers are anonymous (although Wikipedia reveals the identities of most of the columnists) - according to Wikipedia "the editors say this is necessary because 'collective voice and personality matter more than the identities of individual journalists'". This results in the magazine having a collective tone that is consistent throughout and which leaves the reader to judge the issues of the day for themselves.
The central pages of The Economist are made up of global sections, namely Britain, Europe, United States, The Americas, Middle East and Africa, Asia, and International. A number of these sections have their own columnist, e.g. Charlemagne for Europe, the identity of whom changes but whose pseudonym stays the same. The columnists' pages are a little more opinionated than the rest of the publication, as you would expect, but the emphasis is still on substantiating claims and giving background to the issues discussed. On occasion The Economist includes a Special Report, and this will be a series of articles running to many pages on a topic that has been THOROUGHLY researched by the journalists involved. If you are reading about a topic in this publication, you can rest assured that key information will never be left out in order to pander to a particular political spectrum, so you will come away informed rather than humoured.
Towards the back of the magazine are the Business, Finance and Economics, and Science and Technology sections. Following these is the Books and Arts section which includes book reviews, and finally there is the Obituary. This is always a page long and is by no means reserved for the most famous person to have died that week - it seems that the writer instead chooses the most interesting person to have passed away. The Obituary is always a fascinating read, and a frank and rounded view of the person in question.
You may be getting a sense that I am a little evangelical about this publication, and you'd be right. I cannot stress enough how different it is not only from the daily newspapers but from TV news coverage as well. How often do we feel that we fully understand a topic when it has been touched on in the TV news or splashed across the front pages? How often is a topic fully researched by tabloid journalists, with all sides of the story covered and facts and figures included? How many important news stories are overlooked entirely by other media because they are too "boring" or too "complicated"? We are fed a diet of soundbites and press releases and are given no real understanding of the world around us. The Economist is the antidote to all of this, as all important issues are covered and topics are returned to for further analysis long after the attention of the papers has moved on.
On the Contents page of The Economist there is a small note stating the publication's mission statement since it first became available in 1843: "to take part in 'a severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy, timid ignorance obstructing our progress'". I cannot think of a better summation of why I have chosen to ditch the dailies and simply read The Economist every week.
My GP recommended to visit the local swimming pool's steam room to recover from my nasty cough so I went to the local Sainsbury's to buy myself a bottle of water and I was tempted to bring something to read. I was wondering where the readable magazines are as I never buy women's magazines, they are rubbish.
I was about to give up when I spotted the last copy of The Economist right above the daily newspapers. I checked the price tag and was surprised that it was on half price offer for 2 pounds only so I bought it.
While I was a student at the college and university I used to read Newsweek but after gaining my Masters in Economics and started to work in a bank I had free access to The Economist so I switched to it. In Hungary it is even more expensive to get a copy of these magazines. I liked reading them as they helped to improve my vocabulary in my field of expertise and kept me well informed.
The Economist is an English-language weekly news magazine written by economists not only to economists. The first magazine was published in September 1843. Nowadays the magazine appears on glossy paper and contains about 100 pages. The Economist has several editorial offices all over the world: London, Bangkok, Beijing, Berlin, Brussels, Cairo, Chicago, Delhi, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Jerusalem, Johannesburg, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Moscow, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Tokyo and Washington. This magazine is available in about 200 countries all over the world and according to the sales statistics from 2007 more than 1.2 million copies were sold just in the first half of the year. Most of the copies are sold in the USA then in the UK and the rest in Europe so the magazine concentrates on news of these areas but developing countries are in focus from time to time.
As I mentioned before more than half of the copies are sold in the USA and about 20% here in the UK. The magazine has the following topics:
The world this week
This is a 2-3 pages short topic which summarizes the week's political and business news briefly. The countries and events are highlighted so it is easy to spot the ones you are interested in.
This topic contains some articles the magazine focuses on. This week for example there were articles about America's economy, Nigeria or Argentina. These articles are in the spot of the magazine this week, and the content of this topic shows great variety each week.
This short topic is a selection from the readers letters addressed to the editor of The Economist and contain opinions about previously published articles. I have to admit that I am not a regular reader of this topic.
This week Briefing contains a detailed article about Obama and the mid-terms. Briefing usually contains political content underpinned with statistics, examines past and future perspectives.
As you may guess this topic contains articles about the UK. These articles can be of different nature the only thing that is in common is that they are UK related. My copy contains articles about infrastructure developments, future prospective of UK Universities for expanding abroad providing quality education in foreign campuses, government cuts, supermarkets, etc.
This week the topic starts with an article about the euro-zone economy and contains the opinion of Michael Porter, management guru whose publications I follow for a couple of years now. The articles of this topic are about the EU and some articles concentrate on individual countries as well.
As it is the biggest market for the magazine they go into details about the politics, the economy, monetary system, employment, discrimination, immigration and any current issues.
This topic concentrates on Canada, South America and the islands in the area. This week there was an article about Argentina, Mexico, Toronto mayor and Cholera in Haiti.
Middle East and Africa
This topic covers quite a big geographic area. The articles are varied in their content just in case of the previous topics and concentrate on current issues in Africa and the Middle East.
This week India, China and Afghanistan are in the spotlight of this topic. It contains various cultural, political, economic and financial analysis of the countries in the area.
What can this topic cover after going through all the geographic areas of the world? These articles are on topics that affect more countries such as fighting against corruption or immigration, discrimination, etc.
This is one of my favourite topics in the magazine as it is not political and not very finance related. It contains news about multinational companies, industrial analysis, and economic development. The language of these articles is very understandable really written not only for economists. The reason I prefer these articles is the variety of the topics it covers and the information content of them.
Finance and economics
These articles are strictly on financial, banking and economic issues. The language of these articles is more professional but still understandable however I am biased. I studied economics also in English in Hungary so some terms are familiar for me but I can't decide how easy they are to understand if you haven't studied economics or finance. I think they are understandable maybe not as enjoyable.
Science and technology
This is my other favourite topic in the magazine. I like to read articles about new scientific achievements and articles on my current area of expertise (Human Resources) are published under this topic too.
Books and Arts
This topic contains articles on different areas of art; this week music and an exhibition were in focus.
Economic and Financial indicators
This topic is dry stats for professionals. As it is not my cup of tea I don't spend too much time on analysing the market changes, interest rates, etc.
I have to admit that the 4 pounds price tag is quite high for me to buy it regularly from the news agents and I found that a single copy lasts me more than a week to read all the articles I find interesting as I have to study to my diploma, so I buy a copy from time to time only.
I like that I receive a quality magazine for my money and it keeps me informed and I can develop my vocabulary. The issues the magazine picks up are quite interesting and I always find something completely new things in it.
Reading The Economist instead of women's magazines may sound boring but I never was interested in daily gossips on starts I never heard of. I don't have too much time on reading other things than my textbooks so I like to spend that time effectively.
I like that the language of the magazine is not very professional as it is written not only for economists so the topic of the articles is varied and they are informative even if you missed some of the latest news.
Single copies are for 4 pounds at the newsagents which let's admit is quite a lot for a single magazine but as I don't buy it weekly I pay this price for it.
If you are a regular reader it is worth to subscribe for it. The latest offers for subscription are available online at www.economist.com.
Currently they offer:
12 copies for 12 pounds
Annual subscription on Direct Debit for £102.00, saving 50%
2 year subscription on credit card for £182.00, saving 56%
3 year subscription on credit card for £237.00, saving 61%
You can order it not only for yourself but give someone as a gift. The magazine has offer for students as well, available on the web site too.
The magazine has newsletters as well and you can read some articles online too. It is worth visiting the web page of the magazine from time to time.
The Economist's only error is its name. Every week this newspaper (as it calls itself) drops through my letterbox, utterly full of news, politics, book reviews, columns, business news and yes economics. I am convinced it would get the readership it deserves if people only knew there is an alternative to the mainstream UK press. I have found myself increasingly irritated by the assumptions papers like The Guardian, Independent, Times et al make about their readership and since the credit crunch has hit it seems to me they treat large swathes of their readership with disdain. Not so the Economist. It is informative, nonpatronising and gives you a great worldview. It can also be very funny. If you get a subscription it comes out at about £2 a week. I would happily pay double to learn what I do from them. They also have a sister magazine, Intelligent Life, which focusses on culture. The Economist is to the eyes what radio 4 is to the ears.
Recently I have felt myself becoming extremely disheartened by the state of the broadsheet/nontabloid newspapers. The Guardian turning into something exceedingly smug; The Independent becoming downright annoying and The Times and The Telegraph too rigid with their ideologies.
On a whim I picked up The Economist, the issue just after the Con-Dem-olition. I bought it thinking I'd get the 'numbers' so to speak (as you'd think when seeing a title like The Economist). What I didn't realise is that The Economist is actually a newspaper that gives you 'the facts' of everything that's happening across the globe. Information on things you would most likely never here about that I would personally count as news-worthy compared to 'another fox spotted in garden' that many of the Red-Tops and Broadsheets are getting obsessed over.
The Economist is split into sections: Britain, Europe, America, Business etcetera. Even an arts section which I was quite glad of being an arts graduate. The main aspect of the newspaper I like is its lack of opinion; every-now and then an opinion will slip out the journalists words, and their will be a belief they put forward (such as wanting a Conservative Government but who now endorse the new Con-Dem for their mix of money/business experts so to speak), but most of the writing is pure facts where it allows you to put the paper down then make up your own decision rather than having the decision these days made for you.
A recommended news sheet that cuts through the rubbish but does advertise companies and items beyond my understanding (there's a 37,500 watch on the back of one of the issues).
I started reading the Economist because a friend bought me a subscription for my birthday present- I thanked him but secretly dismissed the present as rubbish. The magazines came in every week and soon began to pile up, unopened, in a stack which I would pretend to have read if my friend ever visited. This routine changed dramatically when one day, out of boredom, I actually picked one up and read it, surprisingly it was not all about economics and financial issues as the title suggested and I became deeply engrossed in it. Now I read each new copy whenever I can find the time and it has improved greatly my understanding of world affairs and other international issues.
The Economist is a newspaper which will enrich your understanding of world affairs as well as British politics, although there are sections on economics they are not the main focus of the magazine. Even so reading about the financial matters will help you to understand what the sections mean and probably other sections as well. Money (and power) is at the centre of most things that happen. Although it can be expensive subscribing is very useful and usually in an Economist magazine you can find a few offers to discount a subscription by up to 75%.
So I would recommend you to read the Economist if you have a job which has anything to do with what is happening in the world and even to those whose job has nothing to do with it.
If you consider yourself a well informed, global citizen, then the economist is probably already your publication of choice. Yes - leave it on your coffee table, read it on the tube, stuff it into your handbag just a few minutes late after arriving at your desk - the Economist will give you a well deserved aura of success and culture.
In all seriousness, the Economist is, in my opinion, the best way to keep up to date with what goes on in the world. With a formidable staff of experts in a variety of fields, the Economist will always give you a well informed view of the world. Written in a non-academic style that even stretches to allowing some great jokes, the Economist can be great fun in addition to giving you a liberal education every Friday when it arrives on your doorstep. Here you will not only find the hard news, but the layout allows the Economist to share far more stories from many more corners of the world than others in the print and broadcast media. Columnists are not vitriol filled pundits, but reflective specialists who bring a real umph to the news of the week. Personally, my favorite sections are in the culture section in the back, where theater and art from around the world is reviewed along with great books.
It is far cheaper to subscribe than to buy issue by issue, and, really, who would want to miss a week?
The Economist goes way beyond just economics, take it from someone who is barely passed Econ 110, this is not an academic journal on macro trends. That being said, its not a dumbed down version of anything either! The Economist is a weekly (cones out Friday) news magazine that covers your basic international relations, economics, current events, and political issues. Although they do have sections for the whole world, there is a bias towards UK/US/European issues. There are also sections about books, science, occasional obituaries and other random but interesting things towards the back of the magazine. The political columnists are particularly interesting, each one takes on a specific theme, such as one on the EU, and one on America. The News in Brief, a recap of the top news stories of the week in 1-2 sentence bites in the beginning of the magazine is a good way to catch up quickly if need be. I usually don't make it all the way through the magazine each week, it can be dense reading, but I find it indispensable- the Economist just covers issues that the papers seem to miss, it also usually has more depth and background context for issues than other news sources. Its reasonably priced, considering the expertise you'll receive, and students can receive an extra discount. I believe at the moment you can get the first 12 issues for £12. If you do buy it on a one-off basis, I believe some stores, such as the London School of Economics' student book store may sell it at a slight discount.
I am currently studying economics at A-level and have throughly enjoyed the subject and found it very interesting on a personal level and particularly as it is key in every business, government and country. I am now looking to read economics at university and it was therefore suggested that i start reading the economist. I have since subscribed to the economist for a year and after having been reading it for a few months now have really enjoyed it.
The economist is a magazine (newspaper type thing) that is released on a weekly basis. It comes with a rather large price tag of £3.90, but it would be wise to maybe try it once at this price, and then if you feel you like it then subscribe for a longer period of time.
Current subscription prices:
Special offer - £12.00 for 12 issues (save 74%)
1 year - £93.00 (save 53%)
2 years - £166.00 (save 58%)
3 years - £216.00 (save64%)
But before you buy it you will really want to know what the economist is all about, and from the title you can guess that economics plays a major role in the magazine.
However, in my view it is definitely more than a simple magazine, but a very informative and useful "newspaper" with a variety of different current affairs issues. It is written by economists and includes issues about politics, and has separate sections for a variety of different countries, it of course has a section on economics, as well as business and science and technology sections. I enjoy the fact that they are written by economists as they seem to be very detailed articles which include a variety of complex issues and points. They also seem extremely well researched and in some ways not too bias.
It starts with a basic summary of all major news and incidents which have occurred across the world this week.
In politics it looks in particular detail at all the different world leaders and their recent moves and actions. For example this week looks in particular at David Cameron, the conservative leader. An article which i found extremely interesting was on Mugabe and his recent victory in Zimbabwe. The article discussed in great detail about his "politics" and role as a leader and how other countries have reacted to the recent atrocities. However, it explained extremely well the reasons as to why it is so difficult, particularly for other African countries, to remove or take action against Mugabe.
The economist also looks in detail at all major countries including Britain, Europe, United States, The Americas, Middle East and Africa and Asia. These contain a variety of different issues from politics, international relations and religion to youths, unemployment and defense (or nuclear action for example).
I have to say that i am astounded at the amount of different issues that are covered and discussed in so great detail. It just proves how this magazine is suitable for so many different people and of course you do not have to read it all, but just select the articles which most interest you.
The economist then goes on to discuss Business, finance and economics (it had to come in somewhere). I ttalks about a variety of different types of businesses in both the private and public sector. As well as banks and in particular the recession that seems to be closing in on us all at the moment - i.e th 'credit crunch'.
Science and technology is also a very interesting section in which there are articles on all different discoveries and advances in technology such as 'quantum information technology'.
The final section is on books and arts and is a very nice relaxed way to finish such a great magazine.
Although in some ways the Economist seems to be just full of words and looks rather dull the issues discussed can be rather intriguing and some relevant pictures, or graphs will reinforce the text and make it easier to read (it looks more appealing).
As well as a subscription to the magazine ( if you choose to go for this), you will also receive free access to 'economist.com' the website for the magazine which itself covers many great issues and you can also find past articles and look at these.
This, in my opinion , is a great magazine in which you can find out about everything that has happened in the world over the past week as well as there being interesting issues that you may not otherwise find out about.
And if you really get into it you can always write a letter in with your views on an issue and this may be published in the letters section.
I would recommend this magazine to a whole variety of people from economics students or those interested in studying economics to anyone really who is interested in what is happening in the world and would enjoy something with a variety of issues in it!
I would not advise purchasing from a shop each week due to the rather hefty cost, but would suggest subscribing due to the massive savings and great benefits you will get from this magazine!
Only after having this suggested by my economics teacher and then being given a year's subscription by my grandparents did I pick up a copy of The Economist; perhaps the first thing to put you off is the hefty price tag (£3.90 a week currently) and the second is the sheer amount of News that it contains. Yes, with a capital N.
This is not a publication for the faint hearted. The Economist's stated aim is "to take part in a severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy, timid ignorance obstructing our progress," and this is what they do. News from all over the world is the main substance of the articles, often but by no means exclusively written from an economist's perspective, as well as a few book reviews, an obituary (assuming someone worth writing about has died...), a fortnightly "Special Report" on business sectors or geographical locations, and a quarterly report on science and technology, on top of the usual science and technology news. In the back are published the latest economic indicators that are gathered by The Economist Intelligence Unit.
The Economist sells in 200 countries worldwide, circulating 1.2 million copies last year. As the largest markets are in the US, Britain and Europe, news is generally more focused on them, but there is plenty of discussion of the more important international issues. On top of this The Economist writes books on economics, hosts debates on contentious topics, publishes yearly books of figures and also Intelligent Life - a lifestyle magazine, but (although I've never read a copy) presumably discussing more heavyweight issues than many.
As all journalists are anonymous unless they are writing by special invitation, the tone remains strictly the same throughout, feeling almost as if the same person has written every article. The tone is slightly dry but often humorous, very focused on the topic and in use of language. Generally it is assumed that the reader has a fairly good grasp of basic economic concepts but not necessarily of the various famous organisations and people it discusses. Departing slightly from the norm are the Bagehot, Charlemagne and Lexington columns, which respectively write on an issue of interest from Britain, Europe and the US, often with a slightly greater amount of wit than other topics.
The Economist has been described as an extreme centre paper, extolling the virtues of free trade and free markets, but supporting any political direction that strikes it as the most intelligent at whatever point in history. It supported both the Iraq and Vietnam wars, opposes capital punishment, favours gun control and believes in gay marriages. Across a very wide range of issues it takes a much more objective and rational stance than most broadsheets, providing very in-depth and thoughtful (but not always correct) analysis.
Articles are very sure of themselves in their conclusions, making sweeping judgements on politics, economics and anything else that can be analysed, which can get a little annoying. However, to their credit they publish the letters of anyone who correctly sees flaws in their reasoning, as well as those who miss the point - the approach of an economist to many controversial issues is not necessarily what many see as 'right', but actually the reasoning tends to be sound. Then again, as a student of economics, I would say that.
At £93 for a year's subscription (a saving of 53% on the cover price) I would argue that it really isn't at all bad - less than £2 a week for all the news you could possibly want. With your subscription you also get access to Economist.com - which has all the articles from the newspaper online, plus over 28,000 archived articles and access to the most up to date figures.
If you are a student, then the price for a year's subscription is even less - £81. If you are studying economics (or really any of the social sciences) I would thoroughly recommend getting a subscription - it'll look good if you're applying to university too!
If you're not a student, well, I would still say it is very much worth a look, but only if you like News with a capital N.
Let me start by saying that I would recommend The Economist to most people, but for me, it is not worth not only buying it, but also reading it!
A paradox? A Contradiction in terms?
Well, The Economist is very well written and covers mainly Economy and social affairs and business. Most of the articles do not display the name of the author, the publications comes up once a week, costs 3.25 in UK and is still registered as a newspaper. It contains up to date facts abouot politic, and macro economy.
I would surely recommend it to ANYONE who is NOT working in finance. I work in finance and for me The Economist is probably a bit too old, since I read newwires most of the day, and too vague.
I would surely recommend it to students, both in UK and abroad and to the so called general public. The style of the Economist is easy to follow and it is not right or left winged. It tends to explain facts, give both sides of the coin and leave some question open.
I like the writing style of The Economist very well. When I began studying English, it was one of my favourite readings.
I am a real fan on the Economist magazine, and have now been a subscriber for about 2 years. I first started reading it as a kid, as my family got it, but always found it extremely dull at the time (I wasnt as sad then as I am now!) However, with age and time, I've gradually realised how much of a quality journal it is. It comes out weekly, and find it gives me enough information to make daily newspapers largely redundant, and a lot more info as well.
Well I have to admit, it doesnt have the most catchy or sexy name, but the Economist isn't all about economics. Its foundations certainly are in economics, but its articles cover a huge range of topics, be it the environment, arts, politics or science. There is a section on Finance and Stock Markets at the back, but I know plenty of people who have no interest in economics who enjoy reading this magazine.
It comes out every Friday (the print deadline is 7.00PM Thursday), and is remarkably up to date. If an event occurs early on a thursday, it will usually make that week's edition! (I remember the July bombings which were on a thursday were mentioned in the edition which arrived the next day to my door via the post! - Not sure how they do it!)
The great thing about the Economist is that it is pretty center-ist politically. I dont think it has a real political agenda other than common sense. I tend to agree with almost everything they write, as it is logical and well balanced. The other reason why I like it is that it uses simple language, with a bit of humour. The economist manages to make articles, say on the state of the Japanese Post Office extremely interesting (honest!) The simple language also makes complex political issues easy to digest and understand. It usually presents both sides of the story before giving its own conclusions.
SO WHAT CAN I READ ABOUT?
These are the sections you would expect to find in an average edition:
- The world this week (short pieces on various business and political events which have happened round the world that week)
- Leaders (longer essays on important issues - the editorial)
- Executive Jobs
- Britain (section on UK news)
- Europe (section on Europe!)
- United States (dont need to explain this anymore!)
- The Americas
- Middle East and Africa
- Special report (may be two)
- Finance and Economics
- Sicence and Technology
- Books and Arts
- Economic and Financial Indicatiors
- Emerging Market Indicators
Most editions have one or two special feature sections. The most current edition has two - a focus on India's economy and new skyscrapers, for example!
There are various international editions, which have different weightings to the different regional sections. The UK edition has a great section on UK news and events, which I know is a lot smaller in the US edition. But all in all, the editions are pretty similar other than different local advertisments.
SOME ODDITIES ABOUT THE ECONOMIST
ITS A MAGAZINE WHICH CALLS ITS SELF A NEWSPAPER
The economist originally formed a section of the Bankers' Gazette and Railway Monitor (in 1845!). It originally clamed to be a "political, literary and general newspaper", and I feel it is still this. Indeed it is still registered as a newspaper at the post office, as it aims to bring general, up to date news to its readers.
THE JOURNALISTS ARE ANONYMOUS
It was only after about a year of reading this mag that I realised that the articles never say who they are written by! The website says that 'what is written is more important than who writes it. ' And I guess thats true. Despite this, friends I know in the journalism business still say that the ultimate job would be to be a writer for the economist. I dont know of any other mags or papers with this policy.
THE BIG-MAC INDEX
Proof of it's ability to make economics understandable, the Economist has created its now famous yearly 'Big Mac index'. The Big Mac Index uses an economic theory called the Purchasing Power Parity to show relative living costs when comparing currencies from country to country. Tjis is usually a complex (and hard to understand) task, but the Economist uses the price of a Big Mac, which it states, should cost relatively the same amount throughout the world when taking account of local wages and currency exchanges. There is a lot about it on its website if you are interested (but Ive probably totally lost, and bored you!) This is published yearly and shows which currencies are over, or under valued (although in reality its just a bit of fun)
IT HAS OVER 1,000,000 SUBSCRIBERS WORLDWIDE (a huge amount for a magazine)
GRR, IT AINT CHEAP!
Well, unfortunately this great informative read does come at a price. Currently, an edition in the UK costs £3.25. I think this is quite a lot considering the fact its a weekly - it would cost £195 to buy a year's worth!
However, I subscribe, which cost me a more reasonable £70. This price varies, as there are often special offers. Subscription also includes access to the economist.com website, which is great. (There is another Ciao section covering the website so I wont cover it here!).
WHO IS IT OWNED BY?
All big mags are owned by holding companies, and the Economist is no exception. It is owned by Pearson, which is a huge multinational company, which owns brands such as Penguin Books and the Financial Times.
www - economist.com
UK EDITORIAL OFFICE
25 St James's Street
London SW1A 1HG
Other editorial offices in Bankok, Beijing, Berlin, Brussels, Cairo, Chicago, Delhi, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Jerusalem, Johannesburg, Los Angeles, Mexica City, Moscow, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Tokyo and Washington.
HAVE A GOOD READ (AND DONT FORGET YOULL ALSO NEED TO BUY HEAT TO CATCH UP ON THE CELEB NEWS!)
Please note - I also publish as dan_ep on Ciao!
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The Economist is a weekly news magazine (although my subscription tends arrive every two weeks). The Economist does have an economic bias; it is not that all its articles are on economics but rather that economists write all of its articles. At the Economist they have perfected the art of writing detailed, well-researched, impartial articles that are completely devoid of any emotion. The economist does not do human-interest stories; even the obituaries seem to be rather impersonal. (None of the reporter’s names are ever featured at the bottom of articles giving the impression that the economist is some separate entity. It seems quite right to say, "the Economist says" rather than "It has been written in the Economist".) But this I think is its strongest point. It might rightly be called the social scientist. It covers all aspects of current affairs with the same critical voice. It examines the pros and con's of any action and gives its considered response. It examines statistics not anecdotal evidence. This allows the reader not only to trust the opinion in the Economist but also to examine each case on its own merits. Often it is very difficult to hold an unbiased opinion if the opinion is based on a very emotional article. This makes the economist the perfect counter foil to the tabloid press. Where a tabloid looks at individuals the Economist looks at Statistics, where the tabloid appeals to your emotion the economist appeals to your logic, where the tabloid exclaims its opinion the Economist whispers it in your ear. From a news point of view the economist is about as definitive as magazines get. Its articles are as engaging as they are definitive. Talented writers write them. It is rather disconcerting as the articles are so similar throughout the magazine. And in their own way the articles are even humorous, to an Economist anyway. But since it is so impersonal it does tend to be rathe
r cynical. It is also very sure of its own opinions. A drawback is that all the articles in the Economist seem to express the same point of view, that of the liberal neo-classicist. Although it is called the Economist it is not a discourse on present economic theory, it simply assumes that all the theory it preaches is correct. This does mean it does sometimes come across as rather arrogant. The Economist does have its flaws but I would recommend it to anyone with an interest in currents affairs and a scientific outlook. There is certainly no other news magazine that can match its analytic rigour while at the same time remaining eminently readable.
Now I know that for writing this review, I’m going to be classed as a nerd, so in defence I have to say that ‘The Economist’ is a desired reading material, extra to the normal big fat, boring, text books and journals that I’m supposed and expected to read as part of my course. For all of those people who don’t know me, or what I do, I’m a geography student at the University of Plymouth, which has one of the best departments in the country, some very talented and respected lecturers, and a great and useful web site with brilliant links in the geography department section. The standard on my course is pretty high and I’m expected to read a lot about the various topics that I study every semester, be it biogeography, statistics, or international and political geography. As my preferred subject is political geography then there are several publications that I could read to keep me informed on the day-to-day goings on in the world. I have read several of ‘The Economists’ rivals in this field and have come to the conclusion that it is the best of the bunch. It only reports the facts on stories, and doesn’t glamorise them like certain other publications do, such as ‘Time’ magazine. It is set out in normally 16 sections, so it is easy to find what topic you are interested in just by going to the relevant section. 1. News Summaries; this section gives you the main news in a summary form as the title suggests, so if its just the basic facts that your after then this is your section. 2. Letters; This section gives people from around the world a chance to express their opinions on certain topics, they are almost always of a high quality, and from people with relevant experience in the topic area, so their opinions are well balanced and grounded. 3. Special; This is just a page with focuses on one specific question, and example being, ‘A Franco-Germa
n divorce?’ 4. Britain; This section as you have probably guessed contains topics primarily concerned with Britain, such as current issues, on political, social, economic, and financial events of the past week. 5. Europe; This section is the same as the Britain section but contains news from Europe instead. 6. United States; This section again contains news relating to the United States of America. 7. The Americas; This is one of my most favourite sections as it contains news from Central and South America, (one of my chosen topics), rest assured there is never a dull moment in this section, with rumours of scandal rife. 8. International; International news from other nations and continents not mentioned in the previous sections. Normally about Africa, and the Middle East. 9. Asia; News from Asia, concerning the week’s goings on. 10. Business, This section is exclusively to do with business, and to be honest I don’t often read this bit as business does not interest me. However if there is something relevant to my study then I will read it. 11. Special; Again this section is concerned with a specific topic or question, an example being, Japan’s Sick economy. 12. Finance and Economics; Another section I’m afraid that does not appeal to me, not saying of course that it isn’t of a high quality because if it mirrors the standard of the rest of the publication then it is of the highest quality. 13. Science and Technology; This section lets us know all about recent development in this field, ranging from mobile phones to dark matter in the Milky Way (not the chocolate bar). 14. Books and Art; Past and present work is reported on and reviewed in this section, and if they haven’t talked about it at one stage or another, then its probably not worth seeing or reading. 15. Obituary; As you have probably realised this section informs the public of the death of people in view of the world. S
ometimes household names and others times only recognised to people in their specific field, not suggesting that their lives were any less important. 16. Indicators; Economic and financial indicators from the worlds markets, as well as other relevant information, that you would not perhaps expect to find in this type of publication. On occasion there is also another special section that is in report format concerning a specific topic in detail. These ‘specials’ can be on any subject ranging from Mexico to Technology Quarterly. ‘The Economist’ is published on a weekly basis and you can find the new copy on the shelves of most good newsagents either on a Thursday or Friday depending on where in the country you are. Price At £2.70 a week its not cheap to be informed of the worldly goings on, however if you are a serious reader you can subscribe, which they encourage you to do, by giving huger discounts. Subscription 3 years (153 issues) pay £145.00 Save 65% 2 years (102 issues) pay £110.00 Save 60% 1 year (51 issues) pay £62.00 Save 55% The advantage to subscription is that it saves you a shed load of money, and they deliver it to your door, via the postman. They also send you free via e-mail the summary news’s letter to you PC. ‘The Economist’ is a well-balanced publication, which covers a wide range of topics, and gives you answers to questions that could have plagued you. For the weekly price I would say that it is a little expensive, so subscription is a must as it saves you huge amounts of money. If you study or are interested in any of the topics that it reports on then you can guarantee that you will have the most recent information on the subject, and I for one have found is reports invaluable, in writing essays and understanding my chosen subject just that little bit better.