Newspapers still best source for indepth, timely coverage

Our View

As of last week, there are no longer any editorial cartoons on the front page of a major circulating newspaper on a routine basis. This may seem insignificant to some, but to Brian Duffy (the Des Moines Register cartoonist whose lay-off due to budget cuts created this statistic), the people who enjoyed his cartoons and anyone involved in the newspaper industry, it is incredibly significant.

Why exactly is it so significant? Because it heralds a change to the newspaper industry that includes far more than editorial cartoons. True, this change was not brought about by the loss of Duffy’s cartoons, but the recent development clearly shows the magnitude of the situation. Especially when it occurred so close to home. Obviously, we are saddened by the loss of Duffy’s cartoons and by what it means for newspapers. More so, we are saddened, and at times worried, by the changes the newspaper industry is experiencing. Even before the current economic crisis, newspapers were facing hard times as the number of people getting their news from TV or the Internet increases. However, the state of the economy has truly been what has made it so difficult for newspapers as many people can understandably no longer afford to keep their newspaper subscriptions, and many newspapers can no longer afford to keep all of their employees. In spite of all these changes, we believe that newspapers will make it through these tough times, and that the country will as well.

Although the changes newspapers have experienced may be permanent, we in no way feel that they will lead to their downfall. The field of print journalism was obviously changing before the economic recession, and newspapers most greatly exemplified these changes. It is just that the economic recession greatly magnified the changes, and in some cases made them more than newspapers could bear, as they were unable to adapt as they otherwise would. We hope this will allow Brian Duffy, as well as countless other newspaper employees, to get their jobs back. We continue to remain positive that newspapers will continue to exist in the future. Just maybe in less numerous, smaller versions.

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