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Print struggles in the digital age

by The Stylus
Wed, Feb 27th 2019 01:00 pm
Out with the old The newspaper industry has for a long time controlled the flow of news in the United States. With the recent growing popularity of social media, news is now easier to access than before. Traditional media companies are still in a battle to reach the younger audience.
Out with the old The newspaper industry has for a long time controlled the flow of news in the United States. With the recent growing popularity of social media, news is now easier to access than before. Traditional media companies are still in a battle to reach the younger audience.

Traditional journalism is in an uphill battle of competing in a market overrun by social media, bloggers and anyone with a camera. With the advanced technology of today, the way the world receives its news has to advance with it, but what does that mean for the older forms of media?

Older forms of media like newspapers and magazines could soon be a distant memory. Though magazines are still popular among those of all ages, printed publications have seen a decline in recent years.

Every year, less and less people choose to search for a newspaper; instead, they will use their phones, tablets or computers to search for the story they are looking for.

Even though electronics allow quick and easy access to the top news stories, it will not always provide the public with coverage of local stories that electronic media tends to forget about.

In more recent years, there has been an influx of bloggers who do not possess a college degree nor any prior experience in the journalism field. Without prior experience, independent writers produce false news and other incorrect content.

Blogging may be faster than traditional press, but it is not always trustworthy because of the fast-paced nature of the production.

The journalists who take the time to go through the proper education needed to perform the job of informing the public of the truth still have moments where they are forced to say something that will influence readers or views a certain way, like the Sinclair scandal. Most of the news organizations under Sinclair were forced into addressing the same stories  that were being screened on the teleprompter in the same way, nationwide. The general public may not have caught it at first, with many unaware of what was happening. It wasn’t brought to public attention until a YouTube clip was made of most of the Sinclair outlets reading the same script.

Actions like the Sinclair scandal give journalists a bad reputation and decrease the trust that viewers have put into the media.

With how fast the world is moving in terms of technology, news organizations have been trying to keep up with the latest breaking stories. In the time it takes for a newspaper to be printed, the news has already been circulated and the paper has thus become redundant in some people’s eyes.

Many organizations pride themselves in the publication they put out each week and the quality that’s present is what puts some newspapers ahead of others.

Many people who read the paper overlook the fact that someone else put in a lot of effort to have a higher quality, trustworthy and regularly reliable product.

Traditional news organizations are known for their credibility, leading media consumers to turn to their paper for news, even when people can type whatever they are looking for in a phone.

However, many still go to their phones for answers, which increases the number of people who will turn to online news rather than a printed copy. It has been proven that printed news has hit a significant roadblock and has been on the decline since the early 2000s.

According to pewresearch.org, 60 million printed newspapers were being circulated in the 1990s. Today, there are close to 38 million being distributed and the numbers are falling every year. The research shows that social media has surpassed newspapers by an even higher margin than online publications have.

Although social media allows quick and easy access as well as instant gratification, the information is often biased and dramatized to draw the reader’s attention.

Not only are social media sites producing dramatic content, they are also publishing fake news with a lot of unsourced content or content that is outdated or wrong in general.

The line between real news and fake news continues to become increasingly blurred due to some news outlets getting information from sources with no credibility. By engaging in these practices, they are changing the public’s opinion of all news sources.

Though there is a decline in printed newspapers, the job opportunities for a young journalist are at a high and will remain that way for a few years.

The reasoning behind the influx of jobs is organizations making strides to keep up with the pace at which the world is moving, more news requires more people.

Most organizations are looking for specialized multimedia workers, which is promising for college graduates looking to get into the journalism field.

Just because there is a decline in printed news does not mean it is the end of the world for a journalist; it just means that there has to be an adaptation in order to move forward in this field.

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