Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Locus Constellation 

Got an email today from the proprietor of SciFi Watch, a blog by David Halpert, about a post called Nine Science Fiction Blogs You Should Keep Track Of, one of which was Locus Online. The odd thing was that his description explained that most Locus articles were available only to subscribers, behind a password-protected firewall...

I sent him a correction, but I'm curious how anyone could have gotten this impression. Actually, Locus HQ and I have speculated about setting up some sort of system that would allow only subscribers to access full content from Locus Magazine... but it's never been implemented. An alternative, closer to reality, is to make available full PDF versions of each new issue, for those subscribers who buy such access, either with their print subcriptions or as some sort of electronic-only subscriptions. But that, too, has not been implemented...

So to clarify: the Locus Online website is a constellation of semi-independent sites.

  • The nominal Locus Online site domain is run by me, in Los Angeles, effectively isolated by 400 miles from the Locus Magazine offices in Oakland CA; except for what follows, I post everything on the site, maintain databases and posts of new book and magazine listings, pay for film reviews myself, compile author event and conventions listings, and so on and so on, and on.

  • In just the past few weeks, a News blog and an Roundtable blog have been created and linked into the Locus Online homepage, and these blogs are run by the Locus Magazine staff, mostly Liza Trombi, who's posted most of the news items (though I've posted 2 or 3 of them myself) and organized most of the Roundtable blog contributions.

  • And all along, perhaps even before Locus Online proper debuted in 1997, there's been Bill Contento's Locus Index to Science Fiction pages, which are online samples of his comprehensive Locus Index to SF available in its complete form only on CD ROM.

  • And there's my own Locus Index to SF Awards, first posted back in 2000, with a deliberately different design and look from the main Locus Online site, as if it were an independent site, despite its location on the locusmag.com domain. (And which, in recent weeks, I've been actively overhauling and updating.)

  • And finally then there's *this* blog, also with a deliberately independent design, though it's not situated on the the locusmag.com domain proper...

(And we're not done yet. The Awards Index subsite, aside from regular updates, will be expanded substantially in the coming months.)
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Mark R. Kelly

The opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of Mark R. Kelly, and do not reflect the editorial position of Locus Magazine.
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