The Death of a News Medium

Print journalism has a terminal illness and it doesn’t have long left. Some might say it will only survive as long as Generation X does. That illness that plagues it is the digital age. According to a Pew Research Center State of the Media Report titled Newspapers: Fact Sheet by Michael Barthel, 2015 showed the greatest drop in newspaper circulation and advertising revenue since 2005 and 2009 respectively. Any rises in that time appear to be just be standard fluctuations and do not reflect an actual increase in readership.

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Pew Research Center/Michael Barthel/Newspapers: Fact Sheet

 

This is simple evolution and there will be glitches along the way. Such an example of pseudo journalism would be so-called ‘clickbait’ titles which attempt to generate page views in order to gain ad revenue. Oftentimes, the title suggests that the article might contain some interesting information but it does not actually have that information or it is greatly sensationalized. Some major news corporations are guilty of this as well, as ad revenue is a huge part of how they generate profit. Hopefully we will reach a healthy medium where titles can be interesting yet still be pertinent to the topic of the article.

Although my mom cancelled our Edmonton Journal subscription, she still occasionally accesses the (free) online version of the paper. Pew Research Forum’s aforementioned report suggests that newspapers web traffic has began to overtake its circulation by a considerable amount, and this is just a continuation of the trend towards digital media. Although print news still has its place as a medium for a portion of the population, its death is inevitable, and that’s okay. Just as long as it’s replacement is effective in accurately portraying the news.

Sources:

Newspapers: Fact Sheet

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