Scary thing is (to me), printed magazines will probably never go back to they way they were before the recession. More than one that I subscribed to are now gone! Most of the ones left are 1/2 what they used to be.
You see the same things w/the local newspapers. More and more people rely on the internet for their info and it's free. I am old school and still look forward to pulling my mags out of the mail box to catch up on whats new.
I keep our local papers honest too by dropping them when they start pandering to one side of the political spectrum. Have sent letters to presidents of both papers and let them know why I'm changing. Have gotten positive replies from both. Also told them that I'd been reading their reports of competing w/the net and to not confuse that w/us going to the net to get the side of the news they won't print.
As far as the tech articles in PB, I used to read them all too but they're pretty much the same. A guy has his car race buddy build a motor for his 26' brand X and it's now slower than it was stock and wants help. Seems there's some confusion when it comes to dropping a motor built to propel a 3K lb vehicle w/a 5 speed transmission in a 6K lb boat w/a 1 speed
An interesting thing is that even in this economy some mag's still thrive and even very much niche oriented. I subscribe to 2 very specific car drag mag's that are full color, large page count, professionally done that appear to be as strong as ever. They are the best though at that specific target market.
I really think back in the hey day of the performance boat builders selling more than they could build, spending stupid advertising money w/the mag's, almost all 100% positive write up's etc, etc that the magazines chose to listen to the advertisers and not their subscribers.
Remember back in the day no one made it through a PB test w/o something negative or critical coming up??? Now even if an issue w/a boat does surface they spend a paragraph telling you it doesn't matter or all the builders are guilty of same. I always flip to the advertiser index to get the real reason.
A friend of mine used to write the Unlimited section (when they had one) for PB and they even let him stir the pot.
I still say it was never the same after the big man passed away.