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Screen or Print: The Future of News

More and more newspapers, books, and magazines have stopped rolling off the printers as people have started scrolling down their screens. For many, this new development is just one more way to use new technology to do old things. Like most technology, this has its obvious benefits. Electronic subscriptions to magazines and newspapers are becoming more and more popular, as well as e-books. Is this transition worth it though? What about the soft feel of reading a paperback story while lounging on the couch, or the feeling of standing in line at midnight for the release of a new book in your favorite series? Can you imagine being tucked in to a book reading from an iPad? Call me old fashioned and nostalgic, but no, I will not relinquish that sweet taste of opening an old book, just for the fun of it, to see what’s inside. What is more disturbing, though, is what future generations will be reading on, if they even read for pleasure at all. Printed books may be losing their importance in society, but I surely hope that the same does not go for reading as well, though I fear that might be the case. According to Emarketer, in 2010, people spent 9% less time reading newspapers and magazines as compared to 2009, while in 2009 they already spent 12% less than in 2008. Also, the average American spends only thirty minutes reading newspapers and twenty minutes reading magazines per day, while the average American also has 4 hours of TV and video consumption and 2.5 hours of internet time, including time spent multitasking. This is a very sad trend in society. But instead of looking back, let’s focus on the future. Printed books, magazines, and newspapers aren’t dead yet, nor will they be for quite a while.