Recently, a friend who works in the magazine business told me that paper journalism is breathing its last breath. It’s a relic, he says. Writers are getting laid off left and right; the publishing industry is losing its momentum to internet journalism. Why subscribe to a magazine or newspaper when you can get all the information you need at the click of a mouse button? And for free!
Can this be true? Do I want to believe that my romanticized images of fedora-donning reporters, smoky newsrooms, and flashbulb-cracking cameras are fading into extinction? No, there will always be The New York Times; National Geographic will always remain in publication.
But I agree that there is a new journalistic medium to be reckoned with: blogs. All the information I need is on the internet and I can obtain what I’m looking for seconds before the latest magazine or newspaper stack hits the newsstands. Fashion blogs contain the most up-to-date trends, celebrity blogs such as TMZ pumps out gossip faster than any paper tabloid can spin into print, and book/writing blogs provide more literary insight than I’ve ever gleaned from Writer’s Digest.
This is not to suggest that I don’t love the gritty feel of a newspaper between my fingers or the sweet, slightly perfumed scent of a newly delivered magazine. I do, however, want to take my hat off and recognize the blogsphere where bloggers-of-all-trade act as writer, editor, graphic designer, publicist, and publisher. There’s nothing amateurish about it.
Would it be blasphemy to hope that one day the Pulitzer would encompass blogging?