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Newspapers Yesterday's - Essay Example

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Newspapers became a medium of mass communication in the nineteenth century and gained immense popularity because they were the prime source of news and a virtual monopoly. The printing press, telephone, telegraphs and radios are all relatively modern phenomenon but have passed the relentless march of technology, human beings' insatiable thirst for knowledge which is once again transforming the face of information business.
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Newspapers Yesterdays
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Download file to see previous pages It has been well documented that in 1901, there were more than 20 capital city newspapers in Australia, with almost as many individual owners. Today there are no more than a dozen metro dailies, and just four major proprietors.
The last two decade has seen a drastic decline in the average daily circulation of newspapers which has dropped by almost a quarter. Average daily newspaper circulation has fallen by almost a quarter in the last 20 years. Nevertheless, the decline of head to head daily newspaper competition does not mask intense competition for the time, money and attention of readers and potential readers and newspapers thus still remain an important source of news.
The newspaper business's long-term, seemingly inexorable decline is an old story that is hardly fodder for stop-the-presses, page-one play anymore. The industry has faced declining circulation, job losses and falling stock prices which markedly underscores the transformation sweeping the industry. Newspapers have two big strikes against them: They are in a mature industry (the first regularly published newspaper came out some 400 years ago in Europe) and they are a textbook example (stockbrokers are another) of an intermediary between sources of information and customers - a role that is being increasingly challenged by the Internet.
Scholars predict that in the coming years, daily newspapers will have to strengthen their efforts to attract younger readers, make more imaginative use of the Internet, and develop stories, mostly local in nature, that better meet the needs of readers who have thousands of news and information sources at their fingertips.
Professor Peter S. Fader hopes that people will continue to buy physical newspapers in large numbers in years to come. He compares the Internet's assault on newspapers to the impact that digital downloading of music has had on compact discs: CD's still have appeal but they are no longer the sole, dominant medium they once were. "I still believe that there's a vital role for non-digital content in music," Fader suggests. "There's a lot to be said for owning a CD and putting it on the shelf and holding it in your hand. Some people say that same thing about newspapers. It may be true, but newspapers are transient and have no archive value. They are not a collector's item rather; they are a nuisance to deal with. Newspapers have adapted and thrived during decades of competition from emerging media but are now faced with a more intense level of competition from the Internet and cable television news.
To say the newspaper industry is heading towards a decline is correct because circulation has indeed dropped in the aggregate, but most dailies still remain quite profitable. Newspapers are not headed for extinction by the end of the decade as some commentary has implied. Classified advertising has been the largest revenue stream for newspapers and this can be delivered much more cost effectively.
By the time readers get their papers, they pretty much know the news, and newspapers have already been beaten by TV, radio and bloggers. As a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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