It’s About Time: Print and Digital Merge

It’s been announced that the Washington Post will merge its print and Online newsrooms. The executive editor, Marcus Brauchli said,

“the reorganization was designed to ‘create new reporting groups, streamline editing desks and anticipate the impending integration of our print and digital news operations.’

‘We want to empower journalists and encourage them to work across departments and platforms,’ he said.

‘A single editor ultimately ought to be able to oversee all versions of a story, whether it appears in print, online or on a BlackBerry or iPhone.'”

Way to go, Washington Post and Marcus Brauchli! By taking this chance, you have stepped forward into the 21st century, finding ways to cut costs and potentially save a great paper from the sad fate of several others. 

The Internet has changed how we humans absorb and search for information, especially news. The way we read print newspapers is entirely different from the way we read news Online. The news Online is strictly targeted to us and our interests. So, as a friend pointed out, if you’re a goth, you’re going to search for goth news, and you won’t necessarily be exposed to reggae news, or salsa news.  

But news is news, and the news is going Online, and no one can stop it. And, there’s no way that it is going away. The Internet changed everything, just as the printing press did, and the aftereffects have been devastating to the print media industry.

But, as the Washington Post shows, you either change with the times, or you die. The WaPo chooses life! And it is a smart way to go. 

But, just as electronic media seems to be supplanting print, who’d want to take a Kindle to the beach? OK, you could argue that with a $350 price tag, you’d never want to let it out of your sight. But I digress.

Print media may be doomed, but it will be a long while, if ever, before it goes away completely. We still like the purely portable book. We like to be able to browse through a magazine and be taken away by some graphic or sidebar. We are used to the feel of paper in our hands, and might prefer to leisurely thumb through a book instead of zero in on one sentence or word.

IN*TANDEM, a new Online magazine, certainly understands this. Using your mouse, you can virtually turn the pages! This is a good example of how print and digital can be melded. It doesn’t solve all of the problems, nor will it please everyone, but it is one way of doing things. Plus, it’s COOL!

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5 responses to “It’s About Time: Print and Digital Merge

  1. Sara LaVaquera

    I’m not so sure that the concept of magazine page-turning software is new. See, for example, the Ikea catalog: http://ikeaus.ecweb.is/09/mus/.
    It’s not the same software that IN*TANDEM uses. In addition to page-turning, the shopper can zero in on images to get a closer look.

  2. Cowgirl, that’s cool! Thank you. I have seen similar technology to IN*TANDEM’s also used for museums and libraries that digitize their rare books. I’ll try to find more examples, and post them as well.

  3. More examples of “page turning software” thanks to Sara and something else that I stumbled upon:

    1. Chief Marketer Magazine
    http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/penton/cm_20090405/#/2

    (note the top dropdown menu bar)

    2. Archive.org’s book collection, that has digitized books in the public domain – this is way cool.
    http://www.archive.org/stream/playofman00groouoft

    Enjoy turning the pages!
    FWIW, I still would rather take an old fashioned paperback to the beach. But that’s just me.

  4. Pingback: Reboot Your Library…or Die « MADlibrarian

  5. Hi, cool post. I have been pondering this issue,so thanks for blogging. I will definitely be coming back to your blog. Keep up the good work

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