Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Why Newspapers are dying

In today's Utah Mitt Romney Daily, LaVarr Webb talks about how newspapers are dying.

However, I recognize that I’m part of a dying breed that still likes printed newspapers. I hardly know any young people who spend time with a printed paper. To flourish in the future, newspapers must evolve and become the premier information source for young people. And that’s only going to happen on-line.

I'm relatively young, and I enjoy sitting down with a newspaper. I'll pick up what ever's handy, be it the Salt Lake Tribune, Deseret News, Salt Lake City Weekly, USAToday, Utah Daily Chronicle, etc. I'm not picky. I even read INUtahThisWeek.

My personal favortie, though, is the Salt Lake Tribune. I have been an avid reader of the Trib since Jr High. In high school, it was part of my daily habit to grab the paper to read while I ate breakfast. It was easy, because the paper was on the front step. This was a tradition that happened until last summer.

Sometime last summer, the Tribune decided that they would start delivering my paper in my driveway. Sometimes, they miss and it ends up in the gutter. In any case, I have to put on shoes and a coat to get the paper most mornings. Because of this, I usually don't get the paper before I leave for work. I find other things to read while eating my Cocoa Crispies.

Because I don't get the paper in the mornings, it usually gets dropped inside the front door by whoever the first person to come inside is. It often stays just inside the front door in it's nice orange packaging. My dad is usually the only other person to read the paper, but only if it's already open. My mom will read the comics page sometimes, but only if it's there.

We currently have the papers form last Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday still sitting in their orange packaging.

Because the paper is getting read less and less often, we will probably discontinue our subscripiton once it expires.

The only time I venture onto the Trib's website is to find stories to link to for the blog, or on the rare occasion that I'm looking for updated news stories, and for those I usually look to the DesNews first. Their website is better. My parents never go to the website.

Newspapers complain about losing readership, but they continue to push readership away.


1 comment:

Davis Didjeridu said...

You are right Bob. I still read the newspaper in paper form (currently the Tribune but the Des News not that long ago). LaVar doesn't know enough young people apparently. He obviously doesn't peruse the U of U campus, where the paper stands (which offer the Daily Chronicle, the NY Times, Financial Times, Tribune, DNews, and USA Today) are usually slim pickings by around 3 PM.
In my opinion, young people would gladly subscribe if newspapers gave the right incentives. Lower prices for first-time subscribers, delivery at the door, and most importantly actually good, real news-writing. It doesn't all have to happen online.