Wednesday, August 20, 2014

What's black and white and read all over?

From a piece by Clay Shirky about the decline of printed newspapers:

... and black newsroom humor long ago re-labelled the Obituary column ‘Subscriber Countdown.’

(h/t: David Dobbs)


Kevin Robbins said...

Don't tell anyone that I throw away most of those Sunday inserts. I'm off to submit a letter to my local paper now, while it still exists. As much as I love the trees, I can't live without a physical paper.

Brendan Keefe said...

I used to feel that way, back in the 1990s, when I first started reading the NYT online. I was a long-time newspaper lover, and, for example, looked forward to my first period off all through college when I could by a paper and a coffee and get all spread out in the student lounge. But I discovered not too much longer after, probably around 2000, that I actually preferred reading it online. Being able to do a quick Google or other reference lookup -- for an image of a person who I can't quite remember, for a word definition, for a previous story, to check sports stats, etc. -- is something I found I was missing when reading the print edition.

This applied almost exclusively to the NYT at the beginning, because most other papers' websites were horrible. But that has slowly changed.

I still do miss the gorgeousness of some of the photos. On the other hand, I don't even have a bluff answer about what the print edition does in place of some of the really cool interactive graphics (e.g.).

Which is not at all to deny the validity of your preference, I hasten to add.

I really do worry about the death of the print edition in the sense of it meaning ever fewer dollars available to pay ever fewer real reporters.

Brendan Keefe said...


Kevin Robbins said...

Thanks for that, Brendan. I was thinking in terms of my local paper. The larger national papers are better read on-line. I'm an old fogey and set in my ways, tho.

Brendan Keefe said...

We all are about some things. For example, I will probably be the last person on the planet to get a smart phone, willingly buy a car with an automatic transmission, or use anything other than a stovetop percolator to make my coffee.

Brendan Keefe said...

Also, remember when calling someone or something the shit was considered a compliment? Much as I like to use the slang of the cool kids, I could never quite bring myself to say that.