Show Me the Nerdy!

One for Print

Print is not dead.

Saying that print is dead is like telling me the government has collapsed, that we have no more need for leadership. While the Philippines’ government certainly isn’t flawless, it continues to function to (hopefully) provide laws, services, and order for the citizens’ welfare. Even now, countries with bad governments are in a state of disarray—and life can get worse without any form of governance.

Print must be dying

Many traditional print media options can be found online; perhaps, there is little need to support print media. Let’s use a nerdy (and pretentious) example: The Economist.

More often than not, I don’t get to read The Economist’s print edition. Since I source my copy from the UPM Debate Circle’s subscription, there’s often competition as to who gets this week’s edition. I log-in to The Economist online, instead. The online version contains not only the same print articles, but also content that amplifies the subscriber experience.

First, I have the power to comment on articles, and engage other readers across the globe. I can see differing viewpoints that adds depth to the articles I’ve just read. Second, if I don’t want to read online, I can either watch the video version or listen to the audio edition. This means mobility similar to the print edition, should I want to place the video and/or audio content in my portable media player. Third, The Economist archives its print copies online, so it’s easy for me to retrieve older articles without looking all over the place for the print version. Fourth, plenty of research tools are available in The Economist—from country briefings, special reports, to economic terms explained—that makes it a good site for loading up on world information. Really, the web version of The Economist is so packed that if I list all its merits, I’d be fully straying away from my entry’s theme.

If I want, I can also search the #economist hashtag on Twitter, and find opinions about the latest article on the US Climate-Change Bill. I can engage Twitter users about the topic, too. Intellectual conversations and new information can be derived from a series of 140-character tweets.

Taking only what’s necessary

But truthfully, I prefer the print copy of The Economist; browsing through the articles I’d want to read is easier compared to the online version (even with my broadband connection). I have the liberty of slowly digesting information on world politics and economics without hurting my eyes from the LCD monitor’s 20000:1 contrast ratio (read: that means the screen is bright—very bright, even when you turn it down). Also, the print version is easier to bring anywhere. I would know—I have a netbook that weighs only 920 grams, but that’s still infinitely heavier than a thin magazine.

All the perks offered by The Economist online are just that: bonuses that you may not exactly need all the time. I’m grateful for country briefings, but I only ever read them when I’m panicking before a debate tournament. A page on economic terms explained makes for a good reference, but I hardly need to access the page.

Further, the use of social media to increase my knowledge happens only when I’m: 1) feeling extra-studious; and 2) sociable enough to engage strangers online. Those two don’t happen very often. Most of the time, The Economist is already loaded with so much information that I have yet to read a copy from cover-to-cover.

Here to stay

Print media remains close to my nerdy heart. Admittedly, my dependence on print media has been reduced significantly; it’s too easy to be blinded by the possibilities offered online. This is not to discredit the wonders of online media, though. I am a sucker for many forms of social media, but I won’t write about that now. Rather, I am defending that print media, with its content and convenience, remains adequate for my reading requirements.

Of course, you can always bash my entry and tell me that I only used one limiting example for print media’s adequacy. Please remember, though, dear reader, that not everyone has access to the awesome creation that is the Internet. Even ensuring computer access for everyone is currently a work in progress. Maybe, when everyone in the world has fully migrated to online media, we can let print media rest in peace.


16 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Print will always stay, I think. We still have the technophobes and traditionalists that prefer print media over social media.

Also, I believe that the only endangered print material is the newspaper, if my assumption is correct. These publishing companies have invaded the WWW to reach their widest coverage of audience. Sadly, people prefer to stay at home, click their mouses, and log in to these newspaper sites to read current events (which can also be done in Twitter, I must say).

However, magazines are still rocking the market, and people just cannot resist buying a good copy of a very informative magazine. Hence, print is not dead!

You really have a different and awesome take on the comm evolution. Kudos, Madame Alvina! 🙂

I envy your layout-tweaking powers!

Comment by Nash Albacea

Miged, your ‘people prefer to stay at home’ comment just gave me an idea! Should we fully migrate to the internet (and abandon print, and other traditional media in the process), what will happen to our lives? Our relationships?

What about our ‘voice’ that Christopher Locke wrote so passionately about? If the Internet becomes the media to use, will we still have our voice? The same voice?

Okay, now I’m just not making sense. But the possibilities are plenty, and I’d love to speculate one of these days. 😛

Comment by mostlynerdy

Reading your entry reminded me matter-load. Ack. Anyway, I actually don’t believe with the “added benefit of a subscription” to The Economist. I thought it was just a gimmick to promote subscription.

But hey..

What’s our username and pw again?? :))

Oh, the internet, so, malandi.

Comment by aLps

Let’s go matterloading! HAHAHA my Economist example was so pretentious, but consistent to my blog’s theme. :>

For upmdebate? Lemme find it, I’ll forward the mail in a bit. Alps, for a tech-geek, you are terrible when it comes to storing information! 😐

Comment by mostlynerdy

Totally agree on the part about reading the print copy instead of online browsing.

I feel more distracted when I read online that I easily lose focus on what I’m supposedly reading. Besides, info digest is easier in print!

I don’t think print is actually dying. It’s more like blending in to the trend, which is online.

If the print content is really good, people will always want to have their own copy.

Comment by littlemissstraightbangs

Bring on the print love! 😀

I see online content (mostly the news/education type of content) as an extension of print media, one that is a welcome–if not necessary–addition to our lives. The existence of many options empowers consumers like me to decide what media can enhance my learning experience. With such generosity (coming from whom, God only knows), I am v glad to be part of this generation. 🙂

Comment by mostlynerdy

good points, alvina. it will take a lot for this generation (and mine) to give up the love for print. i, for example, still prefer reading a ‘real’ book than an e-book (it’s hard to curl up in bed with a heavyweight that is an HP laptop).

Comment by barrycade

I can only imagine how curling up with a full-size laptop feels! I tried making Carlisle, my netbook, into an eBook reader, but I wasn’t v happy. 😛

Comment by mostlynerdy

hi ate alvina! first of all, i have to admit that i depend on online sources to find answers for my assignments and researches most of the time because i don’t own a lot of reference materials and i’m not great at researa great researcher at the library but i still prefer using print materials as much as i can.

although using print materials might require more effort for me to find what i’m looking for, compared to having online references which allow me to get what i need with just a click, it also gievs me a reason to value what i’ve learned because of the fact that i invested more time and effort to search for and understand the information i need.

print is definitely not dead. in fact, the online versions of newspapers and other reading materials are just extensions of the print copies. i believe that online publications and printed ones can coexist for as long as there are people with different views on this matter. hehehe. yun lng. i hope you keep posting interesting topics like this one. ingats lagi ate!

Comment by blessie

Thanks for the comment, Blessie! I’m also an advocate of library research, as much as the work is tedious. 🙂

Comment by mostlynerdy

hi ate alvina!

Print is not yet dead, but yes, it’s dying..
In fact, this can already be observed within the university system..UPD does not anymore issue classcards..(But this, I believe, is more of a cost-cutting measure than an innocent move towards computerization.) As for my academic work (How pretentious! hahaha), I’d rather have print sources because somehow it gives me the idea (or the illusion) that I’m actually getting accurate and credible information..But with the age of the majority of the books the the CAS library, I guess I have to think about that again..hahaha

But still I’d choose print over non-print..Viewable anytime, no buttons, no electricity..not to mention it would be better for my eyes…hahaha

Take care! 😀

Comment by CJ

Same here, CJ! Much as searching for books in libraries (esp. since many libraries have that musty smell) isn’t the most pleasant experience, I take great pains to ensure that my information is credible–a quality largely found in academic libraries. As for acquiring updated information, though… well, that’s why we get more than one reference in the lib, don’t we? 😛

Comment by mostlynerdy

I definitely agree that print is not yet dead and I also believe that it’s going to stay alive and kicking forever.
I would rather prefer to believe that most–if not all–of the historical foundations/events that rendered how it is like to live in our realm today are caught on print. Proof of that is the Bible itself (I am not trying to sound so religious though).But it’s true. We owe a lot to print artifacts and we must take it upon ourselves to promote them.

Comment by Diane Pili

Ah, yes, the Bible! Once tech geeks find a way to store data safely for a crazy number of years, I expect that most literature will be stored electronically. I’d like to think that print will still stay, though–the presence of an alternative (electronic storage) does not automatically mean the alternative should be the only option used.

Comment by mostlynerdy

yawn.. print is dead… zzz

Comment by arvinrazon

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