For newspaper executives the world over, this should qualify as an “ah-ha!” moment:
This is what runs through my mind when I read on Facebook or Twitter, journalists pleading/guilting/etc their friends and/or colleagues into buying a newspaper. Newspaper as a medium is not sacrosanct, much to the chagrin of every member of the Newspaper Association of America and most newspaper editors.
I doubt newspapers, the physical product, will go the way of the Dodo any time soon. They still have a purpose. In London millions of people read the numerous free dailies that are handed out each morning and evening.
They read it, put it down, and someone else picks it up. The digital readers like Kindle have a long ways to go before they dominate that set of consumer group, so until then it will be newspapers. And in some communities, newspapers are still preferred. But they’re fading.
But seeing people who don’t buy newspapers as people who “abandoned” newspapers is a very wrong way of looking at it. Newspapers don’t own their readers. They can try to imagine some sense of reader loyalty, but that’s mostly imagined.