Friday, October 29, 2010

Is Print Media Dead In 10 Years?

It's October 29, 2020 and you are drinking your coffee and eating your breakfast. Or you are starting your commute on the train or waiting for your flight to take-off. It is during these and other times, that you find folks reading their newspapers, magazines, and books. But according to this new study, we will all be doing these activities on our digital reader. Print will be dead. "The 24/7 Wall St./Harris Poll on American Media shows that 81% of people believe that the use of print news will decline. That, however, is cold comfort because 55% of those questioned said that traditional media will no longer exist in 10 years."

Now it is very clear where the trend is headed, so no doubt, print media in its traditional form will decline. But I very much doubt that it will cease to exist in 10 years. So I guess I am in the minority. These same type of statements have been said every time a new item was displacing an old one. And yet we still listen to radio, we still use trains, and we will still read print. The truth is that any change forces the older item to adapt or die. But the need for print will remain albeit in perhaps other opportunities. And the transition to an all digital world will not be accomplished within 10 years. I suspect it will take another decade or two. And yet there will always be a need for a printed copy. Whether that printing is done at printers or directly in the home, some form of paper will still be around. We may eventually share it, move it around, and consume media digitally, but we will also still like some of it to be printed.

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