Our View: Five reasons to choose the printed paper
November 26, 2021
Call us old-fashioned, but we love the printed newspaper.
Aside from the simple joy of holding something in your hand and reading it (versus staring at yet another screen), there are many reasons to love the print version of a newspaper.
In the age of the internet, why would we say that?
No. 1: Nobody can change it. Once the paper is printed, it can’t be erased. It’s a permanent record of what was published that week. That includes news, legal advertisements, crime stories, obituaries and more. The historical society and the library offer access to newspapers going back more than 100 years to people researching our local history — it won’t go the way of the eight-track tape or the floppy disk. And because legal advertisements are required as public record, they are permanent too. And that means some future political party or newspaper editor can’t erase them because they want to change history.
No. 2: You never know what you will read in a printed newspaper. Most people at least thumb through all the pages, before landing on a favorite writer or section. On a website, generally, people just head for their favorite parts and skip the rest. That means they don’t get exposed to new ideas — can you say, “Hello, polarized nation”? Worse yet, they don’t stumble across the gems they would have read: the neighbor kid who is doing well at school or sports, the history story, the old friend who died, the council decision that will affect them, or the latest local health news.
No. 3: When people know what’s going on in their community — really know, not just ask others to tell them on social media — they can make better decisions. Whom to vote for, where to shop, what to do on the weekend, how to get a booster shot … it all adds up to a better, more-connected community.
No. 4: Refrigerator moments. Clip out the honor roll, the sports or feature story and put it on the fridge. Let them know you’re proud. And/or put it in a scrapbook for posterity.
No. 5: Civic engagement. In a democracy, the citizens have a job to do too: stay informed. The homework shouldn’t end when school is over. Of course you can read all about national issues just about anywhere online, and television does a cursory job of covering the highlights of local news, but nobody gets into it like your local paper does. For more, see No. 2.
The printing press changed the world, making information available to everyday citizens. We continue that tradition with the printed newspaper. Please support us and your community by subscribing.