Wednesday, October 01, 2008

The Tragic End ... Almost

This afternoon we learned of massive layoffs, again, at the Spokesman-Review.
starting with the Editor -In-Chief, Steve Smith, and affecting some 60 plus editors, copywriters and reporters. We don't know yet which are gone, and I suspect some will be surprises. Int the seventeen months that I have enjoyed the relationship with the Spokesman-Review.

Obviously the paper will carry on, but under what format, or size is yet to be determined. Those of us that stagger under mounds of papers that somehow don't make it to the recyclers will have a problem solved. For those that get their news from the Internet, you lose. Only national and international news appears on the Internet, unless you are obsessed with what Hollywood star is diddling whom, but then that is what the National Enquirer is for.

This phenomenon of younger readers passing on newspapers is not only a disappointment, but a tragedy. An entire generation simply doesn't either like to read, or doesn't know how, or both. Most young people do not read. It's not even a part of their entertainment regime. Video games and other electronic delights have taken over from mainstream journalism.

When I was a child, (a long while back) we didn't have television until I was around 12 years old. It was black and white. There were not cable or satellite signals to be had. But that didn't matter, because we didn't squat in front of the tube as most kids do now. We played outdoors, which in the Seattle area required a great deal of weather tolerance. We climbed trees, slid off tar paper roofs with waxed paper as out sleds, and somehow didn't break any bones. We made tree houses, tunnels, planter gardens, watching with wonder as nature poked the shoots up through the earth.

One has to wonder in this electronic age, whether these kids that grew up sitting in front of cartoons will turn out to be productive adults, or whether they will become drones, incapable of original thought or actions. Perhaps a fast paced video game could help train fighter pilots, but there isn't currently a huge demand for that.

I wonder and I worry that the Spokesman-Review along with other major market newspapers will become dinosaurs, destined for the scrap heap. The other worry, is what is going to take it's place. You can't wrap fish in a television newscast, although there are probably many that would like to do that with my columns.

We may be watching the end of an era, along with the boost of a failing financial world. It would appear that some folks, maybe most will have to find a toughness that they never learned, in order to survive.

I am having problems with blogger .com re: comments. I will post them manually, as I get them until I get it fixed. The other side of the coin is I will also comment on the comments.

"I think your assumption that young people are not reading the news is faulty! We catch the local news and oh so much more on the web, DUH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

This comment shows what I meant, and ignores that I was referring to print, not the internet, which if I have to once again repeat myself, doesn't show local or regional news. Why people choose to take things out of context is beyond me. Oh well, onward and upward. Oh, and the overuse of exclamation points suggest a little immaturity. I don't write this blog for children ... That should have been noted.

1 comment:

Bay Views said...

The comment function hasn't worked well recently. Hopefully the kinks will work themselves out.