The Digital Age: Bow and arrow struck heart of newspapers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By SAIRA SUMBAL

I have strong memories of my father always reading the newspaper. I recall him coming back home from work in his suit and tie, sitting on the couch, and so elegantly reading the newspaper.

Now when I head back home, I can expect to see him reading the news off of his iPad, and also reading the newspaper – but I have noticed its less often. Someone who I’ve watched read the newspaper so diligently in my younger years, has begun to adjust to the perks that come with the digital revolution. And it’s not just my father that is adjusting, but it’s our entire globe.

I really appreciate newspapers, and part of that may be because of my dad. I like to grab a newspaper (usually in the morning), and dissect the headlines of the day, contemplating what X story can potentially mean for the general populace.  But in today’s age, it’s not about newspapers.

In fact, it’s not about hard copy books either. It’s about convenience. The type of ease that means you’re able to conveniently catch pieces from The Economist on your kindle while you wait in line at the airport. It’s the type of convenience you have when someone mentions the breaking news, and you can look it up via your Smartphone – or you just already knew the breaking news because you have an application for news (there is an application for everything, I am convinced from this).

The implications that the digital revolution has on journalism are … many. But to observe how newspapers have been affected, is in some ways like telling the narrative to a story that has a sequel that you know will be gloomy.

The digital revolution has provided us with more convenient mediums to get the news, and furthermore, it allows us to choose what news we read because we can search for it. The question is, is this good for society? Does not having a newspaper mean we miss out on getting information that we otherwise would have learned about?

The outcome of newspapers will be soon determined. And I wonder what the memories of digital age babies will be when they recall the way their parents consumed information.

A professor of mine told me the other day that her 6-year-old threw a tantrum, as she stood facing the television and touching the screen in an effort to “move” objects around like an iPad.  Innovation is important for any business to survive, which means how we consume information is changing. I just hope this is good for us, and we utilize it in such a way to create a more informed society.

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