I read the Wichita Eagle every day. Usually, I read nearly every word they publish, but I read it online via RSS.
This morning, I was getting a haircut. Actually, I was waiting on my son’s haircut and picked up a printed paper. I enjoyed it. I liked the tactile feel. I actually liked looking at the ads. It was kind of a “connecting” feeling that I haven’t had in a while.
I’m afraid it’s a feeling that’s not long for this world. How’s this for amazing: Silicon Alley Insider says you could provide a free Amazon Kindle to every subscriber of the New York Times for less than half of what it costs to print that paper.
“As a technology for delivering the news, newsprint isn't just expensive and inefficient; it's laughably so.”
We haven’t actually subscribed to the paper in years. That’s actually strange. I’m a writer, a former news guy, and made my living monitoring the news for more than a decade.
Nick Jungman and I have talked in the past about the fact that I’m always amazed the Eagle doesn’t push an ad with their RSS feed. Other feeds I read do that, and I wouldn’t mind it at all. He says it’s a technical issue that will only be resolved upstream from the local newspaper.
I also find that I have to use multiple RSS feeds to get ALL of the content the Eagle publishes, and I end up with a lot of duplicates. I’d love it if there was one SINGLE feed for all their local stories, and one for national/international.
For now, I’m thinking about subscribing to the print edition again. Like I said, I kind of liked having the newsprint in my hands. Sound like I’d better do it soon. The way things are looking now, the printed version of the paper may not be around much longer!