Modern journalism has seen many changes through 2016, most of them being bad. The fake news epidemic may be in part due to the massive expansion of online journalism. The Columbia Journalism Review recently published an article highlighting the issues with journalism today. Michael Rosenwald writes about a shift towards online journalism, and how this shift is self deprecating to the industry.
An unspoken idea in journalism is that print publications are fading and that online forms are much more successful. The perspective is held that the baby boomer generation and those older than 55 tend to read the paper while millennials choose an online variant. According to Iris Chyi, a writer and journalism researcher, the truth may be quite different. Her findings show that 19% of 18-24 year olds read print journalism, while less than 8% go to online sources.
At Summit Press, we’ve struggled to expand our subscriber base, partly due to the nature of our publication. Our organization being solely online, requires us to take massive steps to reach people throughout Orange County. The draw of print journalism could potentially be part of a trend that some millennials are starting to identify with. The “hipster” movement leads many people to take up coffee, grow a beard, and wear square sunglasses. The revival of retro, and the era of old is new, may have a connection to print journalism among this generation.
Ultimately, millennials may like print journalism for its tride and true fact based reporting. An assumption is made that the print media holds more validity, and this may only be growing following the 2016 election. Fake news has become a new buzzword amongst those in the media, as some mainstream outlets choose to use it as a weapon against independent publications. While abuse from mainstream journalists may be happening, it does not do justice to the truth seeking individuals such as ourselves.
While CNN, FOX, and others choose to attack alternative media as “Fake News”, a growing uncertainty is happening among viewers. With Donald Trump winning the election, many feel that the mainstream news has misinformed the nation, and chooses to report on issues that fit an agenda. Print journalism may be coming back thanks in part to the fake news epidemic.