????Is print media dead????
A question that is often unanswered, and on the minds of many budding journalists, like myself. Since my time at MacEwan I have been told many things as an aspiring journalist, and most of these thoughts circle back to the idea that print is a dying art, which concerns me immensely.
I do not think print media will become extinct within the next five years, but it will continue to face serious cut backs, and changes to it’s once steady production and business model. With our world continually incorporating the use of digital presence and it’s power to stimulate and circulate information within society efficiently, the print industry has taken a back seat to its competitor- the internet.
The benefits of online media result in it’s ability to be convenient and accessible to it’s followers and large demographic. For readers and publishers worldwide, digital media has become easier to use and promote, because of it’s cost efficient, data enhanced, technological advancements, and its ability to monitor it’s audience uses and likes daily, weekly, monthly etc.
The convenience of news being on our phones, laptops etc. is an advantage, and is comforting for most, because they can read these updates anywhere within society, instead of going out to a grocery store, or gas station, to pick up a copy of the local newspaper.
The information once explored within print media is endless online, its interactive features allow publications to engage with its audience, which was something print could not do effectively; people are now encouraged to leave comments, like and dislike posts, etc. Interestingly enough “according to ‘The Nation’, over the past 20 years, US newspapers have experienced a 40% decline in readership base. As more and more Americans will turn to Vine, Twitter, or even Facebook for their daily news, readership bases are expected to decrease even more.”
In a society increasingly orientated around digital advancements, print media’s business model is slowly diminishing, as are it’s followers and employees, because the need for accessible and cost efficient news does not compete with the internet.
With this information in mind, a question I ask University programs that host Journalism degrees, is why do schools continue to teach students how to produce and write good articles in print media, opposed to online? Why are courses and programs not built around the importance of learning social media etiquette? Or in learning strategies to target your online audience with the stories you write effectively? Instead of deterring Journalists development, and learning, why do we not challenge it?
We must continue to challenge future journalists in the way that social media updates continue to challenge it’s users.