Drowning: An Understatement in News Release

In an industry defeated by the invention of the internet and the rapid advancements in day-to-day technology, one market remains fighting, but most likely a losing battle. Newspapers.

Even with the release of online articles, and news alerts send via web to cell phones nationwide, the newspaper industry seems to be secured only by a thin string. Their desperation can be seen in news stands near and far, perched at every Walmart and Bilo entrance, and countless others, we pass on a consistent basis. The offer: a free issue. This sounds quite tempting, but I believe that giving in might be biting off more than you we can chew. Subscriptions and hefty online fees for article access are soon to follow that freebie that caught your eye on what was suppose to be just a quick rush in for some toliet tissue. The best things in life aren’t free, and things that are free, should make you wonder why. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.

And here is just one example of why it’s too good to be true, and exactly why it’s nearer to extinction than the dinosaurs (who you’ll notice, are no longer among the living). Anderson, SC. The Anderson Independent. Daily newspaper to several, in the thousands I’m sure. News source to many. Decent website if I do say so myself, RSS feeds, videos, links, job postings… All the makings of a business trying to find solid ground in an expanding market. But I find two fatual flaws.

1. Newspapers are online, but still are geared more towards a specific audience. Internet is great, but many of the older generations read newspapers, simply because that is what they are accustomed to (we know this about our senior citizens), because it comes directly to them at a minimal charge, and it doesn’t require any use of technology to find out what’s happening in the area. But, who is the audience that uses these tecnhological resources? Teens and young adults. Notice, there is no sort of social networking system set up, not draws or articles that entice young readers’ attentions, and they certainly don’t avidly seek out topics of interest to these groups of people. Remember when you were in high school and your grandmother clipped out any article with your name in the paper, or your picture, or something you wrote? That made it personal, not only to the older generation looking for you in there source of news, but created for you a sense of pride and accomplishment and a goal to strive to achieve again. That’s striking two for the price of one, and smart buisness of a failing media.

2. Less errors. It’s like, excuse another retail example, but setting an ad in a store without ever looking at the ad itself. You might forget or miss placing sale signs on the correct items, then customers can’t find what they saw in the paper, not to metion they then bother you to help them find it or fight on item prices with you. You must always check your paper, espeicailly the FRONT PAGE for errors. Newspapers are about 5 times as big as a sales paper, and just think about how hard it is just to get thru pictures of items your might want to buy, which make them of high importance, then look at a newspaper, a huge jumble of things you really don’t care about, in search of the one thing that made you pick it up. It is pathetic to have a mistake anywhere, that’s what proofers are for, but understandable, but not understandable when it’s one of 3 main articles with pictures and headlines and the whole works on page 1. If you can’t get the first page right, how are you going to be a credible source of information? That makes you lose all credibility, trust, confidence, and almost makes me think you just are coming out with something, anything, as long as you sell me something. You should be concentrating on newsworthy information that will inform, entertain, and entice me each day. Make me pop in my spare change and actaually care to give it a glance.

Newspapers. Always in the movies. Why? Because they were a written, verified, educated, and newsworthy source. You could trust what it said, and it was an excellent point of reference, available years later in your local library. Now, it’s losing all that is worked so hard to gain, and will eventually no longer exist. I find it sad to have such a prideful endeavor lost over money, economy, and technological advancements. People always preach about classics, from movies to cars to the music they listen to: why not have faith in written classics outside of Edgar Allen Poe, Fritzgerald, and Dumois. Newspapers are about as true to life, serious, influential… Debatably art. And yet, we not only allow it to be destroyed and left behind, but we almost encourage it, sabotage it even.

This speaks wonders of society.

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3 Comments»

  lifehopesnow wrote @

You’ve written a lot about how newspapers are going down the tube.

But slow down the train. They’re not gone YET, and perhaps will adapt to the changing needs of their target audiences.

Newspapers have been with us in America for about 275 yrs. They won’t go away without a hard fight.

  mercerd wrote @

interesting material, where such topics do you find? I will often go

  scotirish86 wrote @

AdAge.com – it’s a great marketing website/tool. And the rest is personal experience. thanks for the post.


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