Volume 33, Number 12, December 1998



The Price is Right?

by Debra Levy

In the final analysis, you and I both know that this is magazine belongs more to you than to anybody else. It belongs to the industry as a whole more than it belongs to any one person in particular–even to any of us here on the staff. This is why we try very hard to bring you accurate, unbiased stories in formats that are easy to read and ways that don’t waste your time. I think because we spend so much of our time on deadlines, we are very cognizant of not wasting any of it–yours or ours.

For example, there are many people who tell me I should use this column to brag about our achievements or fill it up with some self-serving propaganda, as other industry pubs do. But I resist because I find it not the best use of your time or our space. Besides, I learned years ago that "accomplishments that one must crow about himself are rarely much accomplishment as they are crow."

So today, I digress a bit to use this column to ask you for your advice and opinion. Approximately a year ago we premiered a monthly section in USGlass called "Industry Outlook" (actually our magazine staff calls it the "Red Sheet" but that’s a whole other story). Usually appearing in the first third of the magazine, the Red Sheet shows a regional breakdown in glass sales last month vs. the same month a year ago. Each month, a dedicated group of companies around the country provide assistant editor Les Shaver with statistics from last year and this year and also alerts him to trends around the country. During the 12 months, we’ve sought to enhance and expand the section. It has become relatively popular.

We model the section after similar ones that appear in most trade publications across different industries. So with that in mind, we expanded the section a bit more a few months ago to include a survey of average wholesale glass prices. Since January 1998, we have published the survey results for the average wholesale prices of plate glass, laminated glass and tempered glass.

We have received quite a bit of feedback on this new addition to the section–and that feedback has run right down the middle. A good number of calls and letters have come in praising us for providing some basic glass industry economic indicators. Others, including Lou Maygar of Mid-American Glass of Davenport, IA, have written in opposition to the publishing of pricing information (see page 15).

Based on the comments thus far, I’m as undecided as proverbial "moderate Republican" a week before impeachment. Les and I are interested in a bit more feedback about the section as we plan for 1999. You can send your comments via mail, phone, fax or my favorite e-mail to deb@glass.com or redsheet@glass.com.Thanks in advance for your help.

And thank you for all your help, comments, feedback advice and business throughout the course of the year. It is an honor to work for the industry and a privilege to work for some of the nicest people in the world. I would like to thank you for making USGlass number one in the glass industry in so many arenas" circulation, advertising, market share, but I fear that might be crowing a bit. So I will simply extend my appreciation and best wishes for a great holiday season.

Happy New Year,




Copyright 1998 Key Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.