Further evidence of the digitalization of media:
I’ve felt it for a while now. It started during the heights of the economic downturn, when my local newspaper went from being thick with advertisements to becoming an emaciated ghost of its former self. At about that time the tablets were just becoming hot and I, like many others I suppose, gave it a try. Since then, I’ve read most of the information I’m curious about online…though one should realize in this age of near instant information sharing there are sites prone to spreading misinformation or downright untruths.
The Sunday edition of the my local paper has grown since the worst of times a couple of years ago, but I firmly believe we’re transitioning into a time when most “paper” works, be they magazines, newspapers, and, yes, books, will be picked up by the general population in electronic versus paper format.
Is this a good thing or a bad thing?
I suppose there are elements of both to be found. There is something undeniably comforting about carrying an actual a paper product and the risk of “breaking” it is far lower (especially if your reading takes you to the beach). Further, many readers/tablets are difficult to use in broad daylight. On the other hand, there is an incredible ease to purchasing any book/magazine/paper you want near instantly by downloading it to your computer. Plus, having electronic files versus physical products certainly frees up space in your home otherwise taken up by these products.
In time, I predict tablets and readers will become more weather/water resistant and easier to read in broad sunlight. Thus, it seems to me a matter of time before paper products become a very small part of people’s lives and, therefore, it does not surprise me that Time is intent on unloading those products.