What I noticed most immediately about the “What Counts as Writing” gallery was that there is one example of a print newspaper (The New York Daily News), yet countless examples of online news. There is the Boston Globe online, the Big Ten Network online, the Wall Street Journal online, notifications from CNN, online headlines, tweets, and blogs all conveying world news. The shift from print to digital publication was driven as much by the readers as it was by the writers. People today want their news quickly, conveniently and on-the-go. As articles began to be published online, every day newspaper readers stopped picking up the paper from their front steps and instead picked up their phones. A cycle ensued causing online journalism to become the norm and print journalism to approach obsoleteness.
As a reader, I generally prefer reading from paper. I don’t like reading books on a kindle or textbooks on my computer. The one exception, however, is reading news articles. I’m somewhat ashamed to say that I initially learn about a lot of important news events via twitter. For example, I read about the Boston Marathon bombings and the Newtown, CT school shooting on twitter and then proceeded to online newspapers to read the full stories. Below are some examples of twitter accounts that I follow, which posted about the Marathon bombings and were my original source of information that day.
Eventually, I also turned on the television to watch the news. I, like most people, want my news quickly. Articles about the marathon bombings were published not even hours after the incident, and once I read about it on twitter, those articles were available to me within seconds of searching for them. For me, reading news articles is not a leisurely activity like reading a book. I only have to look at a screen for a few minutes to read an online news article rather than for the hours it takes to read an online textbook or a novel. The nature of news predisposes it for online publication, but the same cannot be said for all writing.