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Bloviating Zeppelin: Moribund Paper Media

Bloviating Zeppelin

(in-ep-toc'-ra-cy) - a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Moribund Paper Media

Newspaper readership is down. Fewer young people are picking them up, and the average age of a newspaper reader is now 55, according to a Carnegie Corporation study. Many papers have been losing circulation at alarming rates across all age groups.

Newspaper profits and the stock prices of the companies that own them were also down during the first half of 2005. The biggest newspapers are cutting staffs, closing foreign bureaus and taking other steps to meet their owners' profit goals.

Most of these dire trends are nothing new. Deep thinkers have prophesied for years that newspapers are on a glide path to irrelevance or extinction.

So writes Eric Black of the Star Tribune. But this is nothing new -- Hugh Hewitt documented the new media in his newest book, Blog. Various factors are attributed to the decline including slumping attention span because of TV, the greater importance of radio (read: those damnable Right Wing-nuts) and the internet (read: more damnable Right Wing-nuts).

But there's more: if newspapers have it bad, then TV has it worse. Audiences for news on TV has dropped at a sharper rate, and news on radio has "almost disappeared."

The print media is starting to finally clue in and evidence indicates that what was lost in print is beginning to be made up by associated internet sites. Oh really?

You ever try to "sign up" for any of these sites? I have never once given true information to them. And many of them want cash-cash-cash to access their information, their editorials, their stories.

Rather than bulk up their lost readership I believe that, by charging cash to access public information, the print media is slashing its own collective throat -- which will occur over time. The internet is based upon freedom -- meaning "cash free" -- of information. Not so, you say: what about Porn, a billion + dollar industry.

Nice try. News is not sought by Americans like they seek their porn. Oops. Bad News.

Although, of course, newspapers (and MSM for that matter) are increasingly becoming like porn.


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