Print is dead

This is a reprint originally in the Register-News some time back.


No, not really. You’re reading this, aren’t you? The line was uttered by the character Egon Spengler in the movie Ghostbusters, and I’m sure it has been said by many other people in many other instances. Fortunately for yours truly, and many others, print is far from dead. However, many technology advances may change how we consume news, books, and other traditionally printed material.

The easiest culprit to blame is the Internet. News sites, funeral home obituaries, blogs, and so much more are attempting to gain market share over traditional outlets of information. While these sites can do a decent job of providing national/international news and some opinions, they can in no way compare to local newspapers and their reporters for local and regional news.

Traditional newspapers will dominate this landscape for quite some time since Yahoo and other sites simply cannot maintain a full staff of reporters to cover every region. Thankfully, local media like the Register-News are realizing their expertise is their greatest strength. For example, the Register-News keeps a very active online presence at . Most stories in the print edition can also be found online. Residents near and far can also discuss most anything on the R-N forums.

Books open a whole different realm of possibilities for a very print-oriented business. Generally, if you want to read a book you can buy it at your local store, borrow from the library, or perhaps borrow from a friend. Today, we are faced with some very decent e-book readers, iPhones, and laptop computers to read our favorite titles.

Amazon was first (or very close) to market with their Kindle e-reader. However, several entries have since come along to compete with the Kindle. All of them are pretty easy to read, use very little electricity, and support several formats. With the reasonably new ‘e-ink’ technology, the page is setup on the screen, and you read. The battery is only used when you choose to change the page, and the process repeats.

Unless you have a long wait, commute, or are just a geek, you probably don’t have an e-reader. However, if you are a college student, imagine how much lighter your bag could be by using one thin, light e-reader instead of several very heavy textbooks. Seems to be a great tool in that regard, and if you like to sit in bed and read. With a built-in backlight, e-readers can allow you to turn off the light to let your mister or misses go to sleep while not straining your eyes.

While print is far from dead, new technologies are providing us with new ways to use and view our content. Let us know what you think of our online content, and if you have any experience with e-readers. Personally, I would love to have one to try out and am really curious how well they work from someone with firsthand experience.