I enjoy reading the newspaper every day. I was asked by someone recently why I do this. I responded with this answer, “I learn something each time I read the newspaper.”
For me, the newspaper is different than the online and social media information available at a lightning’s pace from almost anywhere. I don’t necessarily read the newspaper to be on top of the breaking news stories of the day, even though some of the newspaper articles contain better descriptions of actual events than online news websites. I read the newspapers for the character stories, positive pieces, and local information. Where else can I find out that a local company’s generous donation saved a local YMCA’s summer camp from closing down?
There is something extremely satisfying about holding the thin, ink-scented paper within my eyes’ distance. I choose exactly what I want to see and how long I want to spend seeing it. Sure, articles from the paper have caused me to go to new websites, but the information originated from the newspaper. It is personally fulfilling to be in control of my own media for at least a few minutes.
Critics say that newspaper information is worthless by the time it is printed because it has already been reported by many other news outlets, websites, and social media. But think about it for a second. While some of the information may not be the breaking news story of the day, there are other stories and features. With the newspaper, the page is available for my eyes to see at my own leisure. I don’t have this type of control with TV news which is confined by commercials to squeeze in content or on a website where I have flash ads that appear, disappear, or need to be “closed” before I can see the information I actually wanted to read. Sometimes 140 characters isn’t long enough to convey the depth of a story other than a shock factor and no, I do not always want to click on the link.
I also find insight into myself in the content. I find tidbits of information that help me run my business better. I find personal interest stories that I can share with others.
While I am a newspaper loyalist, I also receive daily email blasts from news sources about morning news, check out new websites for the newest headlines, and follow information on Twitter and Facebook. I just prefer my tidbits of information and my local guidance to come from a source that is not blaring in my face 24/7. In this fast-paced, on the go all the time, eat breakfast and dinner on the run society, it is satisfying to me to have a few moments of intentional information control.