Are Newspapers on the Way Out?



It is no secret that newspapers have been decreasing in popularity, the once-popular papers now replaced by online sources. Think of three major news outlets: do they have printed newspapers? And if they do, do they also have an online outlet as well?

As the age of technology persists, and physical newspapers become a rarity, the Newspaper Association of America has taken a step towards the future, changing it’s name to the News Media Alliance. This change in the company name is evidently due to the recent shift from physical platforms of the news to online media outlets such as blogs, online articles, etc. According to the News Media Alliance, “the word ‘newspaper’ has become meaningless in reference to many of the group’s members.” As crazy as it may seem, the word “newspaper” is no longer the immediate source of news, it is no longer the large symbol it once was for the journalistic community.

News Media Alliance claims that the number of newspapers is still decreasing, falling “to about 2,000 from roughly 2,700 in 2008.

Although it is understandable why the News Media Alliance is making the change, it solidifies a larger precedent: things are changing. Our society is transforming from having real people behind customer service to machines, from having cashiers to online ordering machines, from newspapers to online databases. The newspaper is just one of many other tangible, long-lasting symbols of old lifestyles that are being replaced by the hustle-and-bustle of technology.

Newspapers have no place in a technologically based society, and although some may be upset to see the revered symbol fading away, it is better for the news to adapt rather than become deceased.

However, some people do not agree with the shift to an online newspaper. Mrs. Kiernan, English teacher at WHHS says, “I’m terrified to just rely on technology to deliver the news because of the possibility of technical failure. What if all technology fails? How will anyone get the news and know what is going on in our world?” Mr. Levy concurs, saying, “Everyone always enjoys a nice cup of Joe and a physically newspaper to read in their hands.”

Although online exposure allows the news to reach a wider audience than through the declining newspapers, is it really a good idea to get rid of the physical newspaper completely?