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January 16, 2009

Sad about changes in print media

It saddens me to watch the problems of printed newspapers (1/13, Opinion, “Newspapers may fade; journalism will survive”). Most of my career was spent writing and editing a number of publications including a short time on the old Kansas City Times in 1966.

Since retirement, my morning newspaper has been a pleasant occupation. Before that, it was a help in starting my workday.

I spend many hours on the computer exchanging e-mails with a few surviving comrades and friends and with historians and writers interested in WWII and the Korean War. But I still prefer to read the daily news in the paper, since it is totally impractical to work on the computer at the breakfast table or to haul it to the bathroom afterwards.

William H. Finnegan



Laptops are cheaper than computer systems. You can get a decent rebuilt one for a great price.

As for newspapers, unfortunately (or not), they are moving to the online world and the paper ones will soon be extinct. Not saying it's right, just that it's happening.


I wish either Mr. Finnegan, who allegedly spent "most of his career writing and editing for a number of publications" or the crack team of editors at the Falling Star had left out the reference to the bathroom.



Try and be consistent. One post you talk about America thriving, this one you ay "maybe they can not afford a laptop"


"Get a laptop. Join the 21st century. "

Try being less dismissive of a man who is mourning a loss of his industry.

I worked in print media for a few years, as a technical editor, columnist and features writer. I saw advertising revenues plummet with the advent of digital media. I watched the magazine I worked for go from being perfect bound to being saddle stitched into a glorified brochure.

The tragic thing about the transition from print to digital media is that there isn't nearly as much money to be made in digital news. Some large newspapers that used to charge for access to articles had to stop the practice because everyone else was giving it away. Twenty-four hour cable news isn't free, but it's really cheap and its reporting is more current than a once-a-day newspaper. And for advertisers, online marketing is dirt cheap compared to print advertising. There is no way out for the newspaper industry. It's not that they didn't get with the 21st century and go digital. They just can't make any money at it.


Maybe they can not afford a laptop.


I too have been reading newspapers since I could read at all. But now the brilliant, irreverent Pogo has become the left wing polemic Doonesbury. So, it's a habit I am willing to break.

T. Hanson

USA Today has actually grown in subscriptions.


Get a laptop. Join the 21st century.

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