by David Doyle
Most people agree, the only thing that seems to stay the same is change. It seems only a few years ago that Supply Line was a thin pulp paper buy/sell listing, and Army Motors was a slick black and white publication. I also clearly remember when gas stations had to hand letter the dollar increment in fuel prices, because the pumps would not display more than .99 9/10 per gallon; when mailing a package to friends in Britain cost only a few pennies more than mailing the same package to a friend here in the US, and how I hoped to own an example of each body type G-742 2 1/2-ton truck.
But those things have changed. I’m getting to the point in life where I need to start thinking about having LESS stuff, instead of more, and increasingly I find that what I do want – I want NOW. I sit in an office filled with hundreds of books, and filing cabinets of documents. My son sits in an office filled with few books, but several video monitors and infinitely more computing power than was aboard the Apollo spacecraft. I am sure that this “generation gap” is not unique to us.
I travel with a briefcase stuffed with a few magazines of current interest. The young man near me in the waiting room has a thin plastic tablet, upon which he can read any of thousands of books, from Shakespeare’s works to the latest New York Times. While I prefer my way, I can see the appeal of his.
The MVPA Directors have heard the request, not only from younger members, but also those looking to lessen the amount of “things” in their home, as well as our overseas members who would like to speed access to their publications. We have also heard the requests of our membership that we look for ways to maintain our current level of member services, but provide them at a lower cost.
One solution to these varied requests can be found in an “E-membership.” Members, and future members, who opt for the E-membership will continue to have all the benefits and privileges inherent with MVPA regular membership, but rather than receiving printed copies of Army Motors and Supply Line via postal mail, they will access and read their publications online.
The publications will be accessed through the Association website, www.mvpa.org. Members will need only to log in with their membership credentials to gain access. Naturally, the publications, which are a member benefit, will not be available to non-members, and software will track access and limit the number devices that a member can use to access the publications. This will prevent non-members from accessing the material, even if they should discover someone’s membership credentials.
In addition to being able to be read through like a conventional magazine, the online publications are searchable. Open the electronic magazine, enter what you are looking for in the search box, say “CCKW” or “M151”, click search, and it will show you every instance those terms appear in the issue.
If you want a hard copy of a page from a how-to article to take into the shop, simply print that page out. Plus, an active online library of back issues is being developed as well.
To introduce this format, the current issue of Supply Line, as well as the previous few issues of Supply Line and Army Motors, are on line now. To view these publications, go to www.mvpa.org click on the “Member Login & Renew” link on the left hand side of the page. After logging in you can access the portal to the MVPA digital publication library.
It is membership renewal time for many of you now, and we would like to ask you to explore the electronic format. If you would like to keep your traditional membership format with print publications, renew accordingly. The print publications are not going away, rather we are merely adding the additional option of electronic membership. If you would like your upcoming membership term to be in the new E-membership format, then check the appropriate membership category and remit the lower $35 rate. Note that E-memberships are the same price world wide.
Your directors welcome your feedback on this new membership option.