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On Newsweek's Move to Digital

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After 80 years of publishing (and printing), Newsweek magazine is
going all digital starting in January.
The last printed issue will be December 31, 2012.



Good or bad? I suppose a year or so ago, I would see this as bad, but now I am
embracing the digital world and realizing that this is the future. And the
future is here now. When digital cameras first came out, it took me awhile to
get used to it and I was clinging to film, now I can't imagine using film cameras
anymore.



The good news about Newsweek going digital is that they can now publish the news
instantly, which they probably were doing with their online edition now, but
that was not doing the readers of the printed edition any good. But truth be
told, even now, when you visit a doctor's office, everyone is fiddling with
their digital device and not touching the dirty outdated magazines in the
waiting room. They are reading the news on their iPads and iPhones.



I get most of my news from Facebook and Twitter now, mostly Twitter. That's how
I heard about Newsweek going digital -- it was tweeted out and
I read the article through Twitter. I'm reading the Huffington Post right now,
as are you (you are reading this, aren't you?). For almost eight years, I
published the Coconut Grove
Grapevine
and it thrived and flourished and was only digital, never printed,
although a few older folks always would ask me to make it print, so I would
once in awhile print out a few digital pages for them on my Lexmark and hand it out.



One common thought when publications go digital is, "Well, we are saving trees!"
But an interesting fact I heard from my cousin, who worked in the printing and
publishing business for years, is that the trees used for publications are grown
specially in special forests. They are a commodity and they are not just someone
walking into a great forest on a whim and knocking down trees, these special
forests and loggers are growing the trees, making pulp and making paper from
that just for the sake of publications. So these "paper makers" will suffer when
the digital age is complete.



I do have to say, that I read the Miami Herald daily, the old-fashioned way,
holding it in my hands, feeling the paper, smelling the ink and enjoying that.
As much as I am embracing the digital world, the day my daily newspaper goes
digital, I will miss it immensely. But for now, I am assured that the Miami
Herald
print edition will live on. They are building a huge printing plant in
the Miami suburbs as we speak.