The future of small town newspapers

I love newspapers.  I awaken each morning to two of them in my driveway.  I also love the Internet.  And what I really enjoy is being able to read newspapers from all of the world on my computer.  Consequently, I follow the subject of the future of newspapers – make that print newspapers – with special interest.

I am particularly interested in the future of small town newspapers.  I believe that newspapers are especially important to small towns because they can set and or reflect the character and personality of a small town.  So what is the future of print newspapers in small towns?  A comment on the subject made by Sam Diaz, a ZDNet.com blogger caught my attention.  It reads, “It’s an industry-wide dying business model that really doesn’t have much of a future left, thanks largely to the slow reaction of many newspaper executives out there who repeatedly snubbed the idea of news on the Internet.”

I think Sam may be onto something.  Print newspapers, especially those in small towns, must get more Internet savvy.  But that’s not their biggest problem.  Their dilemma is how to make money selling information on the Internet.  Advertisers apparently do not see the Internet newspaper as such a great primary source of business as they did the print newspaper.  So where do small town print newspapers go from here?  Let’s hope that it is not like the The Newton Record, a small town newspaper that just closed its doors after 107 years.

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