Software developers have been receiving offers in the mail to subscribe to Microsoft Systems Journal. Founded in 1986 by Microsoft, the magazine was later co-published with trade magazine publisher CMP Media LLC.
The technically minded publication covered the internal workings of Microsoft operating systems, from MS-DOS all the way to Windows 2000. But Microsoft Systems Journal was merged in 2000 with Microsoft Internet Developer magazine to create the current MSDN magazine, according to Stephen Toub, a technical editor at MSDN who published a report about the offer on his blog last week.
"Readers were skeptical and outraged," said Toub, who received several e-mails about the offer, including a copy of the subscription form.
The offer promises substantial savings to those willing to pay US$50 a year for a subscription and directs them to mail back the forms -- along with checks or credit card information -- by Feb. 3 to a rented mailbox in a Mailboxes Etc. store in a Lexington, Ky., shopping mall.
"For maximum savings, please remit $150.00 for 3 years 36 issues," reads the offer, which also claims that "subscriptions for business purposes maybe tax deductible."