Newsweek Is Dead! Long Live Newsweek!

You may have heard: Newsweek is over. At least in print form.

If Newsweek had announced this a few years ago

Three years ago, the masses weren’t toting around tablets. Today, though, an online search for tablet ownership will show that approximately 25 percent of the US adult population has a tablet — and that even more people will own tablets soon. This rise in ownership, I believe, has changed the tenor of Newsweek’s announcement to shutter its print operations after 2012. Having an online-only version of a magazine no longer means the perception of a second-best delivery method. Today, “online version” can look just like the print magazine — and, in Star-Trek style, be in your hand.

The future Newsweek may inspire

What may be missing from Newsweek’s shift is access by those who don’t have the technology. I write “may be missing” because public-interest organizations, such as libraries, from what I’ve witnessed, have been addressing the issue of technology access in increasing manners.

And could Newsweek, unlike when The Christian Science Monitor shifted much of its work to be online in the past years, be the tipping point for this kind of action? Could Newsweek become the one we all point to as the publication that showed us that ending print publication no longer meant a last-ditch effort? That it instead meant to be relevant was about understanding purpose over method and being able to honor purpose through new method? That’s tough for me to write about, because I think much is lost from replacing a print book with a tablet-cum-book, though Newsweek may show what’s inevitable for quickly-consumed items like short-news-piece glossies: survival means adaptation and saving money on printing costs.

One thought on “Newsweek Is Dead! Long Live Newsweek!

  1. The Economist offers an app that subscribers can use to download the magazine onto their phones. Given the lack of free time available for me to sit and read through a magazine, I prefer this. It allows me to pull out my phone and read an article while waiting for an elevator, or during any other available moment. As a result, it increases my return on my investment.

    Also, The Economist works in ads and offers the ability to download audio versions of certain stories.

    It took me a matter of seconds to realize that this electronic delivery method offered me an overall enhanced experience when compared to the more traditional delivery methods.

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