Sholin on the term newspaper

Industry thinker Ryan Sholin has an interesting post where he argues that the term newspaper is an inaccurate way of describing a large and diverse range of publications that produce news.

I’ve been saying those words in person to people a lot lately:

“There is no newspapers.”

What’s it mean?

It means that if you’re in the business of publishing pronouncements, predictions, prayers, analysis, criticism, or full on takedowns related to the current state of the newspaper industry, please understand that despite the convenience it would provide for said ruminations, there is no such thing as a monolithic, uniform entity called “newspapers.”

You can read it in full here.

I don’t think I agree with him on this one. If the newspaper still has a physical form and if it prints news whether it’s a small-town weekly, an evening paper, or a national broadsheet – it is a newspaper.

Of course there are differences between publications (size, ownership, language, audience, aim etc). But like any large classification there will always be a sub-classifications. I don’t think we need to lose the large ‘monolithic’ classification to better understand the common and individual issues that face these different types of publications, or do I dare say newspapers, as a whole.

Being more mindful of sub-classifications,

Blathnaid

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