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Official, Unofficial or Pirate?
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Official, Unofficial or Pirate?

 
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Rocky



Joined: 15 Jun 2009
Posts: 1463

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 11:38 am 
Post subject: Official, Unofficial or Pirate?
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For the home games played at the Riverside on the recommencement of the 2019/20 season, Middlesbrough have produced the following:

20.06.20 Swansea City - 41 page programme digital issue only. Not available to download.

05.07.20 QPR - 41 page programme digital issue only. Available to download.

11.07.20 Bristol City - 41 page programme digital issue only. Available to download.

For the 18.07.20 Cardiff City fixture they are planning a 41 page programme digital issue only. Available to download.

Printed copies of these downloads have since appeared on eBay as ‘Professionally printed Matchday Programmes, printed directly from the PDF released by Middlesbrough. They are printed to a similar quality you would expect if fans were able to attend the match and purchase at the ground’. The term similar quality is interesting, does that mean better or worse quality? It would also indicate that there is a difference in quality from other programmes produced during the season. Further to this I note that one of the copies advertised on eBay has 40 pages whilst the download is 41 pages. I’m unsure if all those programmes printed are 40 or 41 pages.

The PDF programme cover states ‘Official Matchday Magazine Free Online’ but no hard copies of the programmes were printed officially by the clubs printers or sold via their usual outlets.

So the question arises, as a collector how would you deem these printed programmes? Official, Unofficial or Pirate?
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Spireitenag1955



Joined: 06 Feb 2013
Posts: 75
Location: Chesterfield

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 12:22 pm 
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I'd deem them as official programmes,unofficially printed.
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colchestersid



Joined: 08 Mar 2009
Posts: 296

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 12:43 pm 
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I've bought the Newcastle United v West Ham as a one off (out of curiosity) but I wouldn't regard it as an official programme. My lists will have this as a game without a programme

My own view is that a programme needs to be

- Available before the game (so would not include official reprints or belated printed versions)

- Officially produced in printed format (so would not include downloadable pdfs)

- The most comprehensive officially produced item at the game (so not interested in team sheets where a programme also issued but would collect the team sheet if no programme produced)

- Either officially produced or authorised by the club (but where the club doesn't officially produce or authorise anything, it is available at the ground before games on a regular basis for all matches - so ruling out 99% of ebay pirates)

- It is produced for a specific match/matches (so would exclude most club magazines)

Looking back through my collection I'm pretty happy that covers everything - until recently the only "doubtful" programmes were for games in Europe - now you even see pirates on ebay for reserve team games (and people buy them!!!)
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Spireitenag1955



Joined: 06 Feb 2013
Posts: 75
Location: Chesterfield

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 1:40 pm 
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I've had the same issue for the last couple of seasons.
Being a Chesterfield fan and the club now being in the "pit of gloom" aka as the national league.
Barnet for the last two seasons have not issued a hard copy matchday programme,just an online pdf.
Whilst I can't class it as a genuine programme I've purchased both of them for completion only.
I must say they are printed to a first class standard.
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Dorking



Joined: 05 Feb 2010
Posts: 2004

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 3:06 pm 
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Everyone has their own collecting criteria, just as in the same way people 'collect' grounds they have been to, and there are a myriad of different ways people do and don't count things!

Personally I don't understand why people WOULDN'T want to have a printed programme in their collection if a club produced a digital version

But then we're a funny lot - plenty aren't interested in a teamsheet if it is a photocopy or printout rather than an original, regardless of how good a quality of paper it is (re)printed on!
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Rocky



Joined: 15 Jun 2009
Posts: 1463

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 5:25 pm 
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Dorking wrote:
Personally I don't understand why people WOULDN'T want to have a printed programme in their collection if a club produced a digital version.

In Middlesbrough's case they did produce a 41 page programme digital issue. Printed copies have appeared which apparently contain three blank pages at circa £8 whilst the usual price on match day is £2. Possibly this scenario may turn some people away from obtaining a copy?
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andyjess



Joined: 21 Jun 2020
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 5:33 pm 
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Rocky, the downloaded/printed programme with 3 blank pages is correct if there are 41 printed pages.
All programmes have to be printed in 4 page sections, ie 16 pages, 40 pages, 44 pages. It cannot be printed any other way.
If Boro had actually printed a programme, they would have had to either cram it into 40 pages, or add 3 extra pages of content (or 3 blanks).
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Rocky



Joined: 15 Jun 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2020 5:49 pm 
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andyjess wrote:
Rocky, the downloaded/printed programme with 3 blank pages is correct if there are 41 printed pages.
All programmes have to be printed in 4 page sections, ie 16 pages, 40 pages, 44 pages. It cannot be printed any other way.
If Boro had actually printed a programme, they would have had to either cram it into 40 pages, or add 3 extra pages of content (or 3 blanks).

Andy, I understand that this causes printing issues, but having 3 blank pages doesn't look professional. Boro's programme is usually 40 pages.
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