From a Print-Society to a Cyber-Society

Today, newspapers are known to carry nothing but yesterday's old news with fresh and often smelly ink. They are commonly treated like unnecessary fuel for our recycling bins. This mighty medium of the classy period of the print-society is gasping for the last breath in the cyber-society of today.

If Benjamin Franklin, were he alive today, would throw off his visor and scream at the transition occurring currently from a print-society to a cyber one and settle to fly kites to confirm if there is still lightening bolts left in our imagination.

It was only a hundred years ago, at the dawn of the print-society, where words, nicely arranged and neatly printed on newsprint, were sold to a select and literate few. That's how the power of knowledge and influence was fertilized in the broadsheets, sprinkled though the elite gossip machines and eventually picked by the commoners. Much later, or only a decade ago, most newspapers, weighty and tossed at every second doorstep, still carried the germination of well-branded ideas, and still carried the power to keep our societies glued.

Facing the Truth

But today, embedded in a new cyber-society, newspapers are known to carry nothing but yesterday's old news with fresh ink. They are commonly treated like unnecessary fuel for our recycling bins. This mighty medium of the classy period of the print-society is gasping for the last breath in the cyber-society of today. The days of the newspaper business are numbered.

Like the evolution of any other cultural tsunami, the denial of the newspapermen and their continued resistance to change has only prolonged this agony. Years ago, they vigorously fought against the use of color pictures as being too tacky for journalistic words. Second, they resisted Web sites as cop-outs to the new medium of the Internet and demanded outrageous fees, but later succumbed to free deals.

Now they are in denial in accepting this as one of the final rounds in a fight to survive. Newspapers may always be with us in some form, but they will cease to serve as the principal backbone of the media.

Time to Fly Kites

What newspapers do today is not very different from what they did a hundred years ago. A great but cumbersome process started with Franklin fully relying on Gutenberg's moveable type and flat presses, but, as later fully exposed by Marshall McLuhan, this process is now simply being replaced by YOU. Now, you can do some research and write up some ideas and e-mail all of that to a selected list of people in seconds. Essentially, that's news distribution.

The noble concept of growing trees and pulping them to make paper and to further go through another 1,000 steps to bring that branch of the tree into tabloid shape to be inked, read, and further recycled is dead.

Last Rites

The so-called media barons and the newspapermen controlling the governments are becoming almost mythical. The traditional media is losing its power and impact to the Internet. In time, this whole issue of centralized domination of the media will be transformed into fragmented and widely scattered information points controlled by individuals and their distribution and broadcast presence on the global e-commerce circuitry. This will result in a change from selected media-barons to masses of new information-barons controlling the information pulse.

The new generation likely has no idea what this article is even talking about. Today, the newspaper can't deliver branding and marketing messages effectively and the business has become very expensive. The role of paper in the process of boosting corporate image and brand name identities has shrunken, with that role now shifting to the realms of e-commerce and other cyber-branding mediums. With circulation shrinking, ad sales flat and a dark future, some desperately require face-saving strategies to save some established brands. At the same time, they need to reinvent themselves with some new cyber-branding strategies and name identities if they wish to survive in the long run.

Key Questions

In most cases, where newspaper can't compete with instant news and information, it might be better to shrink the publication into a monthly newsmagazine with good indexing of the past events with analysis. Furthermore if the centralized editorial control and well-branded partisan ideologies were also failing then it could be wise to make them free-flow content generators for the free-flow Internet medium. If the classical structure of the antiquated newspaper company were to melt then would it really transform into a modern cyber-office and blend with the modern times? Well, the last quarter-of-a-century saw more businesses change and evolve than any other period. Newspapers are not excluded.

Though newspapers still have the largest grassroots-level coverage of events and are very much read by seniors and the aging population, the question is how long that loyalty will last. In my view, the new generation has no appreciation or even understanding of the entire process of news distribution.

Lastly, there is one positive aspect of the cyber-society, and that is, the truth is often simple and very straightforward. Finally, we're seeing the manipulative and intentionally deceptive slants in newswriting to be rejected by the masses. The real truth is now increasingly being delivered like a messiah to our overly glutted earth.

Why not save the trees, the toil and the ink? Just hit the send button and distribute your own news. After all no newspaper would dare to print this article.

Latest Reads
Fogg maker takes on fairness creams with Pretty24

Taking a stab at fairness creams’ perennial message of fair skin being the benchmark beauty and success, Fogg deodorant maker Vini Cosmetics (Vini) is touting the idea that every shade of skin is equally beautiful. The company has been plugging the primetime of mainline television channels for the...

MAM Marketing MAM
55% marketers make better decisions with machine learning: iProspect report

MUMBAI: Digital agency iProspect has released its third annual Future Focus whitepaper geared to examine how machines and technology are impacting marketing and advertising in the year ahead. The paper takes a look at how brands can make the most of machines in 2018, from facilitating seamless...

MAM Marketing MAM
Paisabazaar aims Rs 1500 cr mutual fund AUM by 2018

MUMBAI: Paisabazaar has announced that assets under management (AUMs) garnered through its mutual funds products crossed Rs 1000 crore mark last month. The organisation says it is confident of reaching Rs 1500 crore of AUM by March 2018. The fin-tech company launched mutual funds on its platform...

MAM Marketing Brands
Blackberrys gives digital mandate to FoxyMoron

MUMBAI: Menswear fashion brand Blackberrys has assigned its digital mandate to FoxyMoron after a multi-agency pitch. The account will be managed from the agency's north office. As per the mandate, FoxyMoron will be managing the digital creative, media, search engine optimisation as well as website...

MAM Marketing Brands
Kajaria Ceramics launches campaign with Anushka Sharma

MUMBAI: Kajaria Ceramics through its subsidiary Kajaria Bathware has launched a 360-degree marketing campaign with Anushka Sharma who was recently announced as the brand ambassador. By investing in this marketing campaign and an extensive distribution network Kerovit, the bath solutions brand by...

MAM Marketing MAM
Greenply questions your plywood choice

MUMBAI: Greenply has launched its new campaign to make consumers aware that there are consequences of compromising on the quality of plywood used in their furniture.

MAM Marketing MAM
NBA partners Jabong to operate official online store

The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Jabong, India’s fashion and lifestyle e-commerce platform – today announced a multiyear partnership extension that will provide fans access to authentic NBA merchandise in more than 730 cities across India.

MAM Marketing Brands
Coca-Cola launches Maaza Gold

MUMBAI: Coca-Cola India has announced the launch of 'Maaza Gold', a premium mango drink made from the choicest of mangoes.

MAM Marketing Brands
Cipla launches TVC for ActivKids Immuno Boosters

MUMBAI: Mothers’ concern for their children’s health goes to the extent of restricting them from indulging at times. Capturing one of these many concerns, Cipla has released a new TVC for its kids' immunity supplement ActivKids Immuno Boosters.

MAM Marketing MAM

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories