Library Offers Free Magazine Downloads

by ARLnow.com January 15, 2013 at 3:20 pm 4,257 46 Comments

Arlington Public Library launched a new feature today that allows library users to download digital copies of popular magazines for free.

The service is provided by Zinio, which bills itself as the “world’s largest newsstand.” Registered library cardholders can now download unlimited copies of 100 magazine titles — like Consumer Reports, Cosmopolitan, Dwell, The Economist, ESPN The Magazine, National Geographic, Popular Science, and US Weekly — and view the titles on a computer desktop or on an iPhone, iPad, or Android device.

Zinio displays the digital copy in the same format at the print magazine, with the addition of bonus features like video, audio and hyperlinks. The digital copies are always available, never expire, and can be stored indefinitely.

More information on the service can be found in the video above and on the library website.

  • Tax dollar.

    This is definitely worth my tax dollars. It is like a rebate, a highly useful rebate. Thank you Arlington County!

    • Ben

      Yay tax dollars going toward something only rich people with iPads and computers can benefit from.

      • Mike

        Only “rich people” can afford a computer?

      • Chris M.

        Really!! If I were are journalist, I would ask how much this costs, and why we should subsidize the magazine subscriptions of rich folks so they can read these things on their Ipads at home. If this is just a marketing gimmick for Zinio, that would be nice to know as well?

        • jackson

          And you wrote your comment on a McDonald’s bag with your own blood, right, rich guy?

      • speonjosh

        What is the percentage of Arlingtonians that do not have an iPad or computer (or other eligible device)?
        Must all taxpayer funded programs be available to every single citizen?

        • DEVICE


  • JimPB

    ARLCo library rocks.

  • Aaron H. Swartz

    Does Carmen Ortiz know about this?

  • novasteve

    I hate to say it, but there’s nothing there that’s remotely as right wing as the left wing stuff they have available. Sure Arlington is very liberal, but should that factor into which magazines they select for this? Have a little more balance, that’s all I’m asking.

    • JohnB2

      C’mon man!

      • novasteve

        You have a problem with balance?

    • Dezlboy

      @novasteve…why don’t you write the library and let us know the response.

    • Hee-Haw

      For real ? How could you possibly put a political spin on this ??

    • CourthouseChris

      I’m truly curious, what “left stuff” are you referring to? Mother Jones I’ll give you (I’m a subscriber!), but what else? What would you like to see in its place? Soldier of Fortune?

      • novasteve

        Tell the truth, I don’t know if there are conservative magazines because I dont’ read magazines. I’m going to presume Utne is left wing as well since you see it on the shelves at whole foods.

        • wha?

          You’re complaining about the selections of magazines, which you admit you do not read anyway.

          • novasteve

            I’m saying I don’t know of any right wing mags, but there’s plenty of left wing stuff on that list of 100.

        • CourthouseChris

          You do know that right-wingers are free to shop at Whole Foods too? I don’t think the desire to have quality produce is a distinctly left-leaning phenomenon.

      • Hank

        I’d imagine Guns and Ammo is at the top of the list.

    • atozwriter

      The Economist is left wing? And Consumer Digest? Huh.

    • SamsonTheCat

      A list of the lefty-lib magazines ArlCo is trying to push down our throats by making them free:

      The Economist – A magazine (technically a newspaper) founded on the principles of free market enterprise
      National Review – Founded by noted socialist William F. Buckley, Jr.
      Forbes – I hear the president of the magazine ran for U.S. president once. Probably as a Communist.
      Popular Science – Where’s the Popular Intelligent Design!
      Do It Yourself – Probably teaches you to rely on Government hand-outs

      • Mindermast

        Amusing. Let me add some other political propoganda rags…

        Better Homes and Gardens-Stepford Wives lovin’ right wing fascist propaganda
        Popular Mechanics-How to be self sufficient after the apocalypse

    • Kelly

      Umm they have National Review. (What trash!) Do your research before you speak.

    • gail

      Libraries usually have to take bundled packages of sources and don’t get to choose individual titles. I’m sure they didn’t have a category “liberal” to choose.

  • novasteve

    Anyone successfully registered? The link at the library for the first step doesn’t work for me.

    • Max

      Works for me. Have you created an account with Zinio library? What about that link doesn’t work?

      • novasteve

        The first step has a link and the link doesn’t work for me.

        • Max

          Odd. It still works for me.

          • drax

            The link has been sabotaged by liberals.

        • troll

          but you have said repeatedly that you don’t read magazines – why are you trying to register? looking for stuff to complain about?

  • mjw703

    I see the National Review is there, which represents conservative thought. I don’t know if it balances out Mother Jones. Just curious, what magazine would you want to be listed?

    • novasteve

      I don’t know because the only magazine I have gotten in the past 4 years was cat fancy 🙁

      I am not a magazine person.

      • Hank

        Unless the magazine carries a minimum of 30 rounds.

        • novasteve

          Very funny Hank. I have never owned a magazine that carries more than 10 rounds.

  • Carmen


  • KalashniKEV

    Do they have “High Capacity Magazines” or just “Standard Capacity Magazines?”

    • novasteve

      Kev, they’d call them “clips”

      • 10 year old boy

        yes they don’t even know how to play soldiers properly. Scoff.

  • Happy

    Thank you ARLCo library!

    • Dezlboy

      ALL: Seriously, if you like this program, hop over to the library web site and let them know via their contact form. A nice compliment never hurts.

  • John Fontain

    “Free” Us Weekly – Your tax dollars hard at work!

  • fedworker

    Cool. Now I can tell those pesky inner city school kids trying to sell me on magazine subscriptions that ARLCo library stole their business. Now take a hike kid.

  • speonjosh

    Oh this is the best thing ever! I think ARlington’s residents should write the county board with their support. And we should expand the library’s funding by 100% tomorrow so they can do more good things like this.
    I’m so happy.
    Also, this gloomy weather we’ve been having really sucks.

  • gospelsinger

    This is so wonderful- I was trying out the Nook version of Quiltling Arts – very bad on Nook – hardly any photos – the Zinio version is exactly like the print version – thanks Arlington County!!! Love this!


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