I Upgraded

6 Jun

Often times I write quite a few post, but don’t publish them.  I find them more personal thoughts than anything meaningful to distribute out on Nate’s Ramblings.  BUT, I was looking at a few of my drafts, and this little dandy I thought I would go ahead and put out there.  Why not.  It’s not like I have new material everyday or something.

The main reason I didn’t want to is I’ve explored the whole print vs. digital things about a million times on here and I’m sure many of you may be sick of me yapping about it.  However, I did have a few new insights to add.  And that’s what the following post is about.

So, read on – or don’t.  Up to you.  I do have new, non-cartooning stuff I want to write about as well soon, so check back if you would like later.  But, in the meantime, here’s last week’s fine little ditty that I did conduct.  Enjoy.


Unlike many people these days, I did the unthinkable:  I upgraded my newspaper subscription from a Sunday only to FOUR days a week.  Crazy, I know.  I would’ve done the whole week, however, I find I actually don’t have the time usually at the beginning of the week due to my workload.  Like it or not, reading is leisure time.  But, hey – I upgraded!  And you know, I’m finding I really enjoy it.

The days of everything digital makes sense, however, it made me look at newspapers in a different perspective.  I’ve always been a promoter of them due to my industry (you know, with my whole cartoonist thing I have going on).  Beyond that though, I tried to be bias.  I tried to imagine myself as just a citizen that didn’t have ties to business with newspapers.

What I’ve thought about is how print is a medium.  So, it’s basically now a preference.  Some people like tea, some like coffee.  For some it’s oils and not watercolors.  Steak or fish.  You get my drift.  With this being the case, I guess I’m visualizing the print medium as just an option that could actually remain very viable forever.

The thing is though, more and more people are tuning out of print in preference of digital.  I mean, let’s face it, digital offers tons more – instantly.  Print is, shall we say, a little slow.

It makes me wonder though if that is just a trend?  Sure, digital is going to remain a growing field due to the options of it (video feeds, instantaneous news – all the cool stuff).  That’s pretty obvious.  But, is everyone just hopping on board the digital trend right now because it’s new?  And then, will people discover that print is a pretty awesome medium as well and head back to it?  I dunno.

I just look at things that remain viable.  Music, for example, is timeless.  Yet, there are definitely trends in it (think of some of the awful 80’s pop – whew!).  And music has a tendency to go back toward trends of the past.  Like a full circle.  And even the popular music that becomes less-so down the line tends to resurface.  Is this a possibility with print?  Will we eventually have the digital option (which is a given) and find that a high-percentage of people just flat-out prefer print and so it resurfaces?

Of course, the way music has been distributed has drastically changed.  You don’t see many people waiting in line to buy a cassette tape.  In fact, I don’t think cassettes are even sold.  But, unlike print, cassettes died because of better options.  Print, however, has no competition when it comes to reading it in a format that isn’t digital.  Does that makes sense?  It’s basically paper, and nothing else.  So when I mentioned ‘better options’ a few sentences back, there really are none if you don’t want to read digitally.

Comparing the print medium to other things makes sense and then again at a lot of angles it doesn’t.  But to say it is dying I think is wrong.  It’s still an option right now.  A popular option?  Well, judging by the newspapers decline, it sure doesn’t seem like it.  But can it rebound?

It seems to me there has to be a savior here somewhere.  Like, all of the major newspaper editor-in-chief’s.  Can’t they all put their heads together and figure out a good solution?  I mean, unless they want the print medium part of the newspaper to go away.  I just see the downward trend of them and it doesn’t really seem like there’s much of an outcry to get it resolved.  As in, to have best of both worlds.  A newspaper editor should be standing on top of a car with a mega-phone preaching about how their work is viable and important in print; angry and upset about this current trend.  Do something to make papers….cool?

Some things do die though.  Or at least, barely cling to life.  The mentioned cassettes, Deloreans, Polaroid cameras – yea, I don’t think they’re rebounding.  But I see print a bit different.  It’s not a tool that is really worse than digitally reading.  It’s just boils down to a preference, right?

On a financial end, currently (and the way it’s always been) newspapers are the bread and butter to why the comic strip exist.  So, yes, I would enjoy seeing print (newspapers especially) rebound for that reason as well.  But again, I’m trying to be bias here.  And you know, I like reading comics in the paper along with everything else.

As I now get my paper four days a week (Thurs. through Sunday), I’m just going to continue to enjoy it.  God knows how much longer I’ll be able to receive the news this way.  But, I’ll keep reading it as long as it’s delivered.  Maybe soon enough, others that are digitized can experience a difference in the quality that print can allow. Make it a preference?  Here again, I dunno.

Doubtful that I am that print will rebound, it’s nice to imagine my comics being cut out and hung up on the fridge instead of being downloaded.  Plus, with print, you won’t get pop-up ads appearing as you read the punchline as well.


2 Responses to “I Upgraded”

  1. bearmancartoons June 6, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

    I have no problem viewing newspapers online….magazines though I want the real thing.

    • w101njf June 7, 2012 at 6:03 pm #

      Same here. I tried a digital magazine. Bleeach! Hated it.

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