Opinion | Print newspapers deserve a resurgence
May 11, 2020
In a world where the likes of streaming services, online retailers and social media compete in sucking each of us into their rabbit hole of wasted time, we tend to forget one of the driving forces of society: the news.
A good amount of people receive their news via social media or on television. That’s OK, but in doing so, it omits actual newspapers, the type of news outlet you have to read to find out what’s going on in the world.
How many of us read from a physical newspaper anymore? When you get time in the coming days or weeks, try to step away from the world of social media and televised news to read a physical newspaper.
Picking your news source may seem daunting at first. Start by reading your local newspaper. There, one can find stories about events and people all around you. This will connect you to your hometown in more ways than you might imagine.
Now, it’s time for national news. For first time newspaper readers, you should first dip your toes in USA TODAY’s water. The nationwide newspaper will give you a wide variety of news, sports, opinion, pop culture and other sections in accessible, comprehensive articles.
If you want a much broader take on the world, try more complex newspapers like The New York Times or Wall Street Journal. In these publications, you will find much deeper, researched articles on countless current events. Both are great sources to better understand the world around us.
You have your newspaper in front of you. Now what? Scan the stories on the front page and read a couple of them. These are the stories most important in the day’s news. As you flip through the rest of the newspaper, look at every picture and read every headline. Choose at least three of four stories that spark your interest. You might discover something you didn’t already know.
Stories are great ways for us consumers to learn about the world but don’t stop there. I’m not going to say this wholly because I am a columnist but because of its importance. When reading a newspaper, check out the opinions section. This will give you a columnist’s views on noteworthy topics. In doing so, you wear their shoes for a little bit and see how they think and their take on the world. It’s interesting to read another man’s point of view on a topic which will, in turn, slowly transform all of us into critical thinkers ourselves.
Nowadays, reading a physical newspaper may seem like a strange task, that it’s only done by elderly folks, business leaders and politicians. From experience, it’s the complete opposite. Newspapers are there for us consumers to understand the world and discover new realms we never knew existed while building reading skills at the same time.
The next time you find yourself scrolling through your social media feed or watching the news on television, shut those off. Pick up a newspaper sometime. You will be so glad you did.
Noah is a sophomore in the College of Media.