Coverings 2020 Reader Survey

There were no big surprises in this year’s survey. We kept it short to be respectful, but it’s tough. We continue to get demands from advertisers that we “prove” that you exist by posting digital stuff and then counting it in front of them. I keep pointing out that this exercise proves nothing. That reader response is direct and relates to valuable content.

Torlys is a good example. For over 12 years, Torlys had demanded that we introduce this or promote that or notify this or announce that, yet never once has Torlys wanted to address you according to the rules. To me, this indicates an arrogant disdain for you as customers, and I would buy direct from China before using somebody that despises me. Torlys has had the idea that I would be afraid to report its attitude, which I’m not. I probably have just been too patient. Advertise or not, but don’t be pushy.

Seriously, of what value is a publisher that is afraid of a manipulative supplier?

Anyway, I can’t express my gratitude enough to those that responded to the survey. Without feedback, a magazine is just an editor talking to himself in a mirror and trying to garner approval from suppliers. Your comments are invaluable. They give us the “proof” you exist.

I noted that 75 percent of you are concerned about cyber security. We address yet another aspect of the digital world  in our November/December edition editorial, so ‘nuff said. You are concerned, and you have cause. In addition, 13 percent of you have had losses related to cyber crimes. We expected less, but are not surprised. It is what it is.

One thing you should know about yourselves is that 60 percent of you identify yourselves as business owners. We have addressed the import of this before, but it bears repeating. You know what it means to sign each week the front of a cheque while your employees and vendors all get to sign the back. However, it’s so much more than that. C.E.O.s, presidents, labour officials, government employees and safety committees are all employees.

They sign the back. It is you that is bearing the brunt of stupid decisions by government and labour to comply with this or finance that, and it is you that has to figure out how that happens. It’s as if the world has gone through the Looking Glass and logic has reversed. “We want more,” they say, so you have to figure how. One of our commenters remarked that I am “so 1995.” I’m not sure what that means. I hope it’s flattering, since there has never been a successful society that let its children decide the finances.

In any event, he or she is wrong. If being born in 1995 is old, then I beat that by nearly another 40 years. If graduating university in 1995 is old, then I beat that by a mile and added a master’s degree. If it matters, I have been “digital” since my first CompuServe e-address ([email protected]) in 1983. My attitude toward digital is not sour grapes. It’s money.

Anyway, here’s what you had to say, good and bad.

Comments from Readers
What can we do better?
  • Nothing needs improving, I just think that digital is the way to go given the amount of glossy paper required for the top quality printing to show the photography. Less for the recycle bin. And as a by the way, I really enjoy the thoughtful opinion pieces by Kerry Knudsen. He makes logical arguments and applies a great deal of common sense to his pieces. We aren’t seeing that many other places. Bravo!
  • I really enjoy the editorials and the magazine, especially the column where someone addresses problems and how to solve them.
  • New creative products … more training for installation
  • As a designer I enjoy reading Kerry’s ‘note from publisher,’ some very interesting perspectives on what is happening in our world and in the industry. I also like to read about Installation standards, Law, Design, sales, learning about what is driving business is knowledge. I use this magazine as a source for finding products that have been tried, and tested with confidence in our industry. I would like to see a little more on design in flooring, (that’s the designer in me asking) but overall I’m happy with the content. Very realistic publication. I like the fact that it is not fussy with overkill on ad’s. I don’t think it needs to be any bigger. Regarding the subscription price, most mag subscriptions are between $19 to $29, so this price point would be more suitable. Hope this helps.
  • Keep technical articles as well as the concepts carried in Paul Epp’s articles.
  • Choose a product category for each issue, ie SPC , carpet tile etc, and do an in-depth feature on it I enjoy your magazine especially your opinion pieces.
  • Go Digital. I’ve been waiting for a long time…Too much paper piling up in magazines!
  • I don’t agree with many of the right wing views of the editor, he is so 1995
  • We need more info on installing products like how to prep a floor and what product do we prep with when we are installing various floors. It seems like we have to re-invent every time we start a job. I have been in flooring over 30 years.
  • Add new apps and technical info to better serve customers and grow my business


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