Print v.s. Online News

7 Sep

“The death and life of the American newspaper,” by Eric Alterman, provides an interesting look into the history of the printed newspaper.  

http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008/03/31/080331fa_fact_alterman?currentPage=all

  In it, Alterman laments that online media will overtake the printed form of news. He thinks that a move to online media will result in people being less informed, and lead to bad things happening.

 “Just how an Internet-based news culture can spread the kind of “light” that is necessary to prevent terrible things, without the armies of reporters and photographers that newspapers have traditionally employed, is a question that even the most ardent democrat in John Dewey’s tradition may not wish to see answered.”

 The article does do a good job of explaining the history of the printed news, and the path that has led to the current days of online media. Alterman, however, was a bit too concerned, perhaps, that online news would eliminated the printed paper. Time seems to have proven him wrong on that point. While his description of the history of the printed news was interesting, it seemed to me that he got a bit too caught up in the liberal v.s. conservative politics of newspaper history, and at times, sounded like he might have been pushing an agenda. The space might have been better used to describe the differences between print and online journalism. He gave the impression that a move to online journalism would be a bad thing, but I believe he is wrong about that. Overall, though, the article is quite insightful.

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