Online News

24 May

Online debate: It would be better for everybody, including journalists and their
audiences, if newspapers just went ahead and died.

The issue that newspapers should just die has created a lot of controversies all over the globe with those for new technologies stating that this world is quickly becoming a global village and newspapers will no longer be needed as they no longer hold a place in society. But is it really fair to just kill the newspapers when millions of people in Africa and other poor parts of the world depend solely on the newspaper for information and news of the world aside from their communities. This essay will be against the death of newspapers and will try to portray how much we still the newspaper in the world. It is going to show various points and arguments that we still need the newspaper.

Traditional Journalism vs. Social/Citizen Journalism

Newspapers, the television and the radio have been a source of information to many families for a very long time. These are the medium that are responsible for bringing information and news to most of African societies even up to this day. Indeed the 21st century has brought about a huge immense change and because it is a new information medium we have to embrace it however we have to put it in mind the emergence of a new information medium does not mean we have to throw out the old. “I think we were slow to catch on,” says Jay Smith, president of Cox Newspapers, a chain of 17 daily and 25 non-daily newspapers.  These same mediums we want to throw away carried us to these new mediums and we have to respect and give them credit. Newspaper moreover are still very much profitable for example, the Inland Press Association recently reported that, contrary to expectations, many papers are still profitable. And advertising research firm Borrell Associates recently predicted that newspapers’ print ad revenue will actually increase 2.4 percent in 2010, and 8.7 percent by 2014.

Citizen Journalism vs. Journalist

Citizen journalism is when the ordinary citizen takes pen and paper and writes news and becomes more involved in the news that will be going on. They do this through blogs and various social Medias like twitter and Facebook. They are most not credible and might lie in their story as they will need followers for their blogs. Moreover people in local areas will not be able to access the use of news media’s. They are not bound by ethics and should not be treated as journalists. The question becomes are they credible, factual and do they use credible sources therefore we still have a need for a newspaper that is written by those who are bound by law and ethics for such a job.

Online vs. Print


Indeed online printing has changed the value of literature, in relation to how and who is reading the article and why are they reading it. Online printing has made it made it possible for mass communication; nine people cannot read a book at once if it is a hard copy but it is possible online. However we still need print media as some of the members of our society are computer illiterate and will be unable to access information online. Not everyone is ready to face a computer screen and read a book from a screen for nine hours. Online media is bad for members of our society who have bad eyesight.Investment banker Ken Marlin also warns against simply hurling the print edition into cyberspace. “It’s not good enough to take what you have in print form and put it up on the Web,” he says. “You have to take advantage of what the new medium offers and what the new medium allows you to do.” While a newspaper might list Italian restaurants in a neighborhood, its Web site could allow readers to say, “I’m standing on a corner. Tell me the inexpensive Italian restaurants within half a mile or so and book a reservation.”


Online journalism provides news instantly in a matter of minutes. There comes the question has it been classified, is it credible, and is it true or it has just been produced to keep up with the great consumer demand. There is need for factual checks and editing. Indeed newspapers are struggling but they are here to stay as our low incoming society needs them. “The Source: Newspapers by the Numbers”“The key to the future of newspapers is the effort to build a broad portfolio of products around the core product, the traditional newspaper, and to connect with both general and targeted audiences, The corner barbershop frequenters, our elderly people, and the local dealers and shops that still need to put their ads in the local newspaper. We still need to put our birthday wishes in the birthday column, do the puzzle and read the horoscope columns, our children still need to read the kiddies columns and do the little colour in and puzzles. Gordon Borrell CEO of Borrell Associates says newspapers should start by relaxing a little, and realizes that readers still prefer the printed paper for local news. “People don’t go to the Internet in huge droves for local school board news or local crime news,” he says. “I think [newspapers] should stop giving that away on the Internet.”


We might have moved along with the new media’s that have come, some have adapted well and some have struggled to get along with the emergences that have occurred. Many people still need to use the newspaper as they cannot afford to move along with technology, are old and unable to use the technologies provided or are sight handicapped. Adding all the arguments in a nut shell there is still need for the daily morning newspaper and the newspaper must and must not die.

I think we should keep their print papers for a while longer. It’s a simple question of profit and catering to what users want. If you have thousands of users that want their paper, and it’s economically justifiable, just keep it.

The tricky part is determining how much loss in paper subscribers you should tolerate before shutting down the huge printing presses. I have no good answer to that other than to know your numbers. Paper profit needs to cover paper printing and distribution. Journalism costs can be split between channels.

Many people believe newspapers are dying and eventually will no longer exist. What are your thoughts on this?

I think they will persist, just not their paper versions. Many of them are looking at dwindling subscription numbers, year after year, and are trying to figure out what to do. How do you move to the digital worlds while keeping quality, relevance, and profit?

As for readership, while it’s true that news websites are gaining ground on newspapers, Martin Langeveld, a columnist for Harvard’s Nieman Journalism Lab, recently found that more than 96 percent of newspaper reading is still done in the print editions. The online share of the newspaper audience only amounts to about 3 percent, he found.

Until someone figures out how to make online news sites profitable, newspapers aren’t going anywhere.

Reference List

Baran, Stanley J. Introduction To Mass Communication: Media Literacy and Culture. 6th ed. New York: Mortimer, (2010). Print.

Medina, Jennifer. “Los Angeles Schools, Facing Budget Cuts, Decide to Seek Corporate Sponsors.” New York Times 16 Dec. 2010: 22. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Web. 4 May 2011.

Posnick, Sherry-Goodwin.  “Public school kids now a captive advertising audience?” California Teachers Association. CTA. Mar. 2010. Web. Apr. 2011.



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