Today I read an article entitled "For Newspapers, a Less than Daily Future" on the American Journalism Review Website. This article speaks about how Newhouse papers in New Orleans and Alabama are seeing print reductions to save money and appeal to the increasing population of the digital age.
Both of these daily publications will begin only printing three times a week starting in September 2012. This is a trend that is becoming more popular throughout the United States. However, even though many are jumping on board with the digital news age, some cities, like New Orleans, are unhappy with the printing reductions. The article stated that there was even a rally in New Orleans this week over the printing reduction, but professionals do not see Newhouse changing its mind.
Professionals are interested to see how these changes affect the relationship between the readers and the newspapers. Could this be the beginning of the end of the newspaper as we knew it?
I personally like newspapers entering the digital age. I think it is so convenient to have the news at your fingertips whenever you want. With smart phones as capable as they are now, there are no limits as to where you can receive the daily headlines and breaking news. Internet access comes at such rapid speed in the United States that, in my opinion, it makes sense to take advantage of that. I can see how big news companies can lose the relationship with its readers by posting all its articles online, but at the same time, companies like CNN and FOX already do this and its publics are still present.
I think this is a topic very relevant to public relations practitioners around the world. For instance, our main newspaper in Charlotte, NC, is the Charlotte Observer; it is online and in print. Since it is online, essentially anyone can see its content. If I wrote a news release and promoted it to the Charlotte Observer, anyone around the world could receive my message. The power of our words are only continuing to grow, giving us even more responsibility.
What do you think about newspapers becoming "cold" within your smart phone or computer? Do you like the idea of holding a print copy of your newspaper or would you like to see the digital age grow?
What about in your own country? Are you seeing similar reductions outside the United States? How does this relate to public relations in your country?
For Newspapers, a Less than Daily Future
By Jaclyn Harris