What is the future of print media?
Answered by Professor Naomi Baron, Anya Kamenetz and 2 others
  • Professor Naomi Baron

    Professor Naomi Baron

  • Anya Kamenetz

    Anya Kamenetz

  • iO Tillett Wright

    iO Tillett Wright

  • Sandy Smolan

    Sandy Smolan

  1. Professor Naomi Baron Professor of Linguistics and Executive Director, Center for Teaching, Research and Learning, Department of Language and Foreign Studies, American University

    Contemporary statistics on the decline of print speak for themselves. (Borders: RIP; New York Times: Please don’t make good on your prognosis that the paper might no longer appear in print “sometime in the future, date TBD”– as might also happen with the next edition of the Oxford English Dictionary.) While believers in print may or may not be able to stop the waves, it is imperative that before screens essentially replace hard copy, we take a careful look at possible consequences.

    More answers from Professor Naomi Baron »

  2. Anya Kamenetz Author, Fast Company Writer, Educational Futurist

    I think that it’s important to be medium-agnostic.  It’s important to not get hung up on whether your work is being delivered in dead-tree format.  The important parts about print media, the things that we like, are the thoughtfulness that goes into it and the time that goes into it.  The editing and the checking, these are all great things.  I think that they can all be preserved in a digital format and that they’re going to be.  That is how things are going to work in the future.  I mean,

    My latest books, I have two - one that’s coming out with the Gates Foundation support and the other one is Mozilla Foundation - they’re both free.  They’re both eBooks.  They’re both available in multiple formats.  Some of the experience is having a finished, polished product that took months and months to complete.  And, in the .pdf version they’re going to have that hermetically sealed thing where this is a finished product and a done deal and you can scan through it and it’s linear.

    And, that’s all great.  But, the Mozilla book is going to exist in app format and the Edupunks’ Guide is going to be designed online in an annotatable form so people can come in and give their comments, and their corrections, and their additions.

    But, I think that not getting too hung up on the final format of what you’re doing, and just figuring out how we can support quality content production, and support long forms, and support a good reading experience for people, I mean, these are really the key issues.

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  3. iO Tillett Wright Artist, Photographer

    The old fashioned newspapers and magazines and struggling for their lives at the moment. Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr have taken the power away from the media, and put it in the people's hands. You don't hear about anything in the paper, or on the news anymore, that you haven't already seen somewhere online. This, of course, breaks my print-devoted heart.

    More answers from iO Tillett Wright »

  4. Sandy Smolan Film Director

    I'm on the fence about that. And I'm a bad judge. Because I still like to read. I still like the tactile sensation. There are times when I know I need to get away from the computer. And there has been backlash in the last year about the antitech experience and the need to kind of get back in our bodies.

    I think there'll be a point where people -- where the newness of technology starts to wear off and it balances. My dad used to always say things will always go back to an equilibrium. The pendulum will swing this way. It'll swing that way. And at the end, the pendulum will come back to the middle. And things will go in a certain direction for awhile but then come back.

    More answers from Sandy Smolan »

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