Media myopia and the New Yorker

A month ago, the New Yorker published an article called “Out of Print” that shows the collective problems of the newspaper and larger media industries, which has been a regular topic in the industry itself, online, and elsewhere. I’m not one of these awful “bloggers will replace the media” types, chiefly for what, as the article says, “[…] the parasitical relationship that virtually all Internet news sites and blog commentators enjoy with newspapers.” You might notice that I’m linking to a magazine.

Still, I sent this letter to the editor, which went unpublished:

That “Newspaper companies are losing advertisers, readers, market value, and . . . their sense of mission at a pace that would have been barely imaginable just four years ago” shows the industry’s collective myopia in the face of rapid technological evolution (“Out of Print,” March 31st). As a high school senior in 2001 – 2002, I was the co-editor-in-chief of my high school newspaper and seriously considered picking colleges based on their journalism programs, but even then it was obvious to me that the Internet would make journalism at best a tenuous career choice. From my perspective, the pace of change was entirely imaginable, and I shifted my academic priorities because of it.

Now I write a book blog. Although it is not professionally edited, it is one of many blogs supplementing or supplanting traditional book review sections that have been heavily cut by newspapers. My life is a microcosm of the problems being experienced by traditional print media.

Normally I like to hear about typos and amend them silently. But if there’s one in this particular blockquote—be silent! It’s too late!

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