Many times have I read (usually online) or heard the phrase “print media is dead”. This particular phrase causes me a rather large amount of pain however, since I love print. I write for the griff, and one of my favourite parts about it is holding a hardcopy, printed piece of writing, with “by Lydia Fleming” at the top. Of course, there are other reasons I love printed media more than digital, narcissism isn’t the only argument have for the revival of print.
One of the things I like about print is the fact that it strains the eyes far less than that of a digital screen. I refuse to buy a Kobo reader, and when I edit assignments that are particularly long I always prefer printing them out and editing a paper copy. I know I’m not alone in this, I’ve had friends and family, editing professionals, and co-workers all say similar things. Print is relaxing to the eye, it doesn’t strain and instead allows you to read and enjoy in a way that doesn’t interfere with your sleep cycle.
In an article by Michael Rosenwald, he discusses how print should have become completely obsolete, but it hasn’t, and that’s for a good reason.He discusses a research project by Iris Chyi, and her discovery that print media has outperformed digital in almost every way, including readership, engagement, and advertisement revenue. This study shows how although print “should be dead”, it isn’t, and it probably won’t ever die. That’s thanks to the fact that not only is print media better for your overall well-being, but people in general like it more.
I sure like it more. I love the smell of print, holding physical copies, and when I read print, the words feel more real than anything digital.
Mike Dandrage discusses how to use print effectively in his article “Print is Not Dead Yet,” and he says to keep print alive and well — even though print seems to be fairing rather well on it’s claimed “death bed” — we must follow three simple steps. Personalize, preset, and parcel. Personalizing and proper presentation seem like obvious ways to ensure good writing anywhere, but the act of parcelling physical copies, mailing and handing people a physical copy they can’t ignore, that’s one thing digital can never do. I for one want to keep print alive and avoid pulling the plug while there’s still brain function.
Dandrage, M. (2016). Print is not dead yet. Electrical Wholesaling Exclusive Insight. http://library.macewan.ca/library-search/detailed-view/bth/120483354?query=print+media+dead#fulltext_html
Rosenwald, M. (2016, Fall). Print is dead. Long live print. Columbia Journalism Review, 34-41.