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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]