This week in class, we discussed media ownership, as well as where we all got our news. Most said that they looked at multiple news websites in an attempt to get a variety of viewpoints. Professor Hayden joked that no one watches the nightly news anymore except old fogeys. I suppose that makes me an old fogey, since I like to watch the NBC nightly news while preparing dinner, though that may have something to do with my crush on Brian Williams. 😉
One source that no one mentioned was newspapers. I suppose I need to qualify this- we probably all look at the websites for the New York Times and Washington Post. However, when was the last time you actually bought a physical paper, much less subscribed to one?
It seems that reading the paper is increasingly falling out of vogue, and the numbers back up this impression. A recent Journalism.co.uk article reveals that worldwide newspaper circulation is down 2%. This is only the second year in recorded history that circulation has dropped. Interestingly, the drop in circulation has been uneven. In North America, circulation was down by 11%. There was also a 12% drop in Eastern and Central Europe and a 2.5% drop in Western Europe. On the other hand, readership was up by 7% in the Asia Pacific region and 2% in Latin America. Unfortunately, they do not provide any reasons for this disparity. Readers, do you have any idea why this would be?
Other news sources that are in decline are the radio (I guess we prefer our commercial-free iPods?) and free daily papers (though you wouldn’t know it if you take the DC Metro). Fear not, newspaper fans. Newspapers remain the number one news source overall, with 2.3 million daily readers. However, internet news is catching up with 1.9 million daily readers.
What I would like to ask you all is, why do you prefer internet news to newspapers (or vice versa)? Do you think that newspapers have a chance at revival, or will they soon seem as dated as our friend the telegraph?