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21st Century Printing Press: The Internet and Journalism

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Monday, March 19th, 2012

The Internet has revolutionized the way we do nearly everything.

In the early 2000’s, with Napster and the evolution of the CD-R, the music industry started to feel the pain of distribution being pulled from their hands. Sites like MySpace empowered musicians to promote and sell their own music. iTunes brought back the single, changing the way large record labels produced albums. In short, the industry changed dramatically in a very short period of time. Things could no longer be done the way that they had always been done.

Much in the same way, traditional media has felt the pinch of the Internet revolution. Major newspapers have felt the pinch of print subscriptions dropping and advertisers splitting their budget with online ads, and many have not been able to keep the presses rolling. The ones that have managed to stay alive had had to slash budgets, which has left us with a media that cannot do the job it once did.

For example, let’s look at the drop in the number of statehouse reporters:

The truth is that the last few years have been really exciting in Washington… or terrifying, whichever way you want to look at it. The result has been that the focus is on what’s happening in DC, and the story of what is happening at a state level has fallen off the radar of the average American.

In short, the Internet has seriously injured the print journalism industy.

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