Newspapers: Online Versions, What?

I’m going to go ahead an be a bit unpopular and say that I prefer E-books to real books. Why the heck not? They’re more convenient (I can open them up while riding in a bus or while I’m waiting for something to happen), more portable (yes, they go everywhere with me) and I can carry around a whole bunch of them (this is invaluable when you finish books as fast as I do).
In my opinion the invention of the epub is one of the best things to happen since the invention of the printing press to the book world.

Until recently, I was an ebook sceptic, see; one of those people who harrumphs about the “physical pleasure of turning actual pages” and how ebook will “never replace the real thing”. Then I was given a Kindle as a present. That shut me up. Stock complaints about the inherent pleasure of ye olde format are bandied about whenever some new upstart invention comes along. Each moan is nothing more than a little foetus of nostalgia jerking in your gut. First they said CDs were no match for vinyl. Then they said MP3s were no match for CDs. Now they say streaming music services are no match for MP3s. They’re only happy looking in the rear-view mirror.”
― Charlie Brooker

…But I can’t really say the same for newspapers.

Maybe this is a bit weird (especially in this day and age, when everyone knows you’re not supposed to believe anything you read in the papers), but I like reading the paper.

As Aneurin Bevan (the post WW2 health minister of UK) said,

I read the newspapers avidly. It is my one form of continuous fiction.

There is something very sacrosanct and sacred about opening the neatly pressed and folded pages of a newspaper…and something even more special about trying and failing to put them back just as neatly. (There are two kinds of people: those who leave a newspaper slightly less organised then when they picked it up, and those who leave it in complete shambles).
I love skimming over the headlines in a single 10-15 minutes, putting aside a little time to read the front page and then the editorials. If I have time after, I read any other articles that caught my attention.

However,  online versions of the newspaper just don’t work like that. They absolutely insist that once you open an article, you read the whole thing.
Besides- where is the addictive smell of cheap, freshly printed ink?

Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.

-Thomas Jefferson

I can write it out in black and white: The online versions of newspapers confuse me.

On a somewhat unrelated topic, can someone recommend a newspaper in the US that I might enjoy reading? I liked the Economic Times in India (which is less about finance than you think), but the Wall Street Journal here sort of bores me.

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One thought on “Newspapers: Online Versions, What?

  1. I like e-books for the convenience, but I am working on my master’s degree and find it really hard to use textbooks online. I also prefer to read the newspaper in print rather than online, although it is convenient to be able to e-mail an article to someone when you find it interesting. I just read my local newspaper and occasionally the New York Times or Washington Post, so don’t have any great recommendations for you.

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