Another newspaper fan cancels the print edition

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Continuing a trend among new media enthusiasts and longtime newspaper fans, Editor & Publisher columnist Steve Outing recently put aside his guilty feelings and canceled his subscription to the local print newspaper:

I’d been thinking for quite some time that I didn’t really need the print edition any more. My wife and I had conversations in recent years about dropping our subscription to the Boulder Daily Camera, but whenever I brought it up she vetoed the idea. She continued to enjoy the print reading experience each morning. (I attribute this in part to simple habits; she’s 48 and I’m 51, and newspaper print reading is ingrained in members of our graying generation.) But even she recognized that everything that was in the paper — and much more — is available in convenient form online for free.

What put her over the edge — and allowed me to prevail with my suggestion of abandoning print — was the most recent bill from the local paper. It included a significant price hike, just as we were noticing the paper and its coverage get thinner and thinner. Pay a lot more and get less? If we needed something to push us over the edge and cancel print delivery, the extra 15 cents a day (about $53 a year, bringing the annual bill to a bit under $200) was it. No, that’s not a lot of money, and if we truly wanted to continue getting print delivery, we’d have paid it. But for a product that increasingly is less useful in light of online alternatives, there was no motivation to accept the price hike.

(As I was writing this column, coincidentally, a Camera telemarketer called with an offer to restart our subscription at the old rate. I’m not surprised, but we still declined.)

[Continue reading Life Without Print]

Outing joins other journalists who have been moving away from newspapers and magazines in a trend that is disturbing and, at the same time, understandable.


1 Response to “Another newspaper fan cancels the print edition”

  1. 1 carlcaceres April 1, 2008 at 11:57 pm

    Articles such as this one really drive home the need for the journalism business to adapt and change in a world driven by technology. Local papers will continue to struggle without undergoing major changes. The time of denying the fact that the local paper is a dying breed of journalism is past although it is still difficult to accept. Personally I would rather read something in print than add yet another thing to do online and spend even more time on the Internet staring at a screen. This article really made me realize that my opinion in this matter is one held by only a select minority in the population these days. Just like the local newspaper I must come to grips with the fact that technology will never go away, and instead of avoiding or complaining about its existence I should not only accept it but use it to my advantage in gathering news. The Internet continues to change our culture and forces it to evolve. However this article also raises the question of how far will we go in letting the Internet change our culture?

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This blog is maintained by Dr. Matthew M. Reavy as a service to journalism students at the University of Scranton.



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