The Student News Site of Claudia Taylor Johnson High School

My Jag News

The Student News Site of Claudia Taylor Johnson High School

My Jag News

The Student News Site of Claudia Taylor Johnson High School

My Jag News

You-Tube killed the newspaper’s stars

You-Tube killed the newspapers stars

by Emily Moore | Photo Editor

The New York Times: a syndicate and foundation for the modern model of newspapers.

“And each day, barring labor strikes, or hydrogen bombs, [The New York Times] would appear in 11, 464 capitols in the world, 50 copies going to the White House, 39 copies to Moscow, a few smuggled into Beijing, and a thick Sunday edition to the Foreign Minister in Taiwian; because he required the Times as necessary proof of the Earth’s exisistence, a barometer of its pressure, and assesor of its sanity. If the world did indeed still exist, it would be dutily reported every day in the Times.” The Kingdom and The Power, Gay Talese

Forget Jason Blair and Judy Miller, the New York Times is an institution, a back-bone of the modern daily newspaper, and the rigid outline it follows. For many years, the Times has created a precipice by which the rest of the country’s media information presenters are jumping, begging, and pleading to get behind. What the New York Times was capable of doing, and still is capable till this day, was to raise the level of standards and ethics to their appropriate ranks. The Times allowed quality control to become a major beacon in the horizons of newspapers, and journalists alike, to instill the fact that they were there to present not only news, but quality news.

I regret missing the time when CBS, ABC, NBC and any other major news network would turn its naiive eyes to the knowledgeable, welll-informed front page of The New York Times to add credibility to its broadcasts. When print newspapers were revered as the most important spreading of information and facts. I hate the fact that now news is framed around celebrity marriages, divorces and, oh yeah, the occasional war. News used to be substansial, well it still is- but it’s changed. In more ways than I feel comfortable to admit.

Daniel Ellsberg helped shape the New York Times' dismissal of censorship when he leaked to them the Pentagon Papers- revealing high sensitivity military secrets.

The free-breathing, organismal newspaper we have come to know and adapt to today created itself and ripped itself off the shoulders of an opressive word-of-mouth from the government when the New York Times went ahead and published the Pentagon Papers. Sure, Daniel Ellsberg was probably way out of line sending the Times those leaked miltiary papers; but without them, without that access, America would’ve still been in the dark.

So why are we, as a whole, coming together and completely by-passing the very hand that has fed us viable, reliable, and substansial information for so long? Why are we in a  position right now where news is over looked because its too violent, too real, and too honest? Are we honestly living in a society where we’d rather spend all of our time wasting our brains watching Jersey Shore instead of knowing what’s really going on, and what’s really important?

When founder of Michael Wolff went against David Carr, media columnist for the New York Times on the tv show Intelligence squared (basically, a televised debate) and brought up his idea that the media was “not necessary, and that this nation was in fact not about informed citizenry”, I was shocked. I mean, here’s this balding, middle-aged man who created and founded a website saying that the media is irrelevent; degrading his own accomplishments. As he continued, my loathing for him only grew. Wolff then went on to inform us that “The New York Times is a good newspaper- sometimes. The Washington Post is a good newspaper, the LA Times, before it became a bad newspaper, was a good newspaper. But, after that it’s off the cliff, it’s oblivion. The news business in this country is nothing to be proud of. The media is a technology business. That’s what it is, that’s what it has always been. Technology changes, the media changes.”

Sorry Wolff but no. You’re wrong. On so many levels.

Let me explan.

Personally, I think newspapers saved America. Not in the grab-a-machine gun-I-got-your-back sort of way; but by simply taking facts and printing them. By allowing the public to have first hand knowledge of what’s really going on. By not just standing by and letting the government cover it all up. Newspapers have made this country what it is, information wise, and we are just turning our backs on all of it.

It’s not even just the accesibility of facts, is how they’re presented. How they’re written down. Newspapers take thousands of infintesimal specks of information, and narrow them down into what makes the core of the story, what makes it news worthy in the first place. Then, those facts are metamorphasized into a story. And not just any story. A good story. A relateable story. A widely accesible story. So that all walks of life, all social standings can look at whatever occurence has gotten itself implanted onto the front page, and decide for themselves. Newspapers are what make people equal, and what make different opinions okay. Without them, we’d be relying on the devices of social media for all of our updates- and I wouldn’t trust that for a moment.

The real difference here is that not everyone can write the news, and still it’s universal. It doesn’t stand for nonsense, yet it still has comics. Newspapers are developed, created, have life breathed into them so that they can become a part of daily life, and a part of normal routines. What we’re missing today is time to use them, enjoy them. Our real problem isn’t that we don’t have the need to enjoy newspapers correctly, it’s that we don’t have the time to.

My other problem with the media’s reputation these days is that it’s not even credible. I mean, most of the stuff circulating the web is based off of a newspaper somewhere down the line. Just look at the New York Times, or The Huffington Post. Then, scroll over to Nick Denton’s brain child, Gawker Media, and see if anything looks a little familiar. Funny, huh? Yeah. No. Newspapers are losing respect, money, and prestige more and more every decade because someone has decided to tap into this generation’s thirst for rapid, instantaneous information and condense well-written, thoughtful news features into two to three sentence glimpses. What used to be just an excerpt is now the whole story. And no one seems to mind.

My solution is simple. Grab a cup of whatever, sit yourself down with the Sunday edition and a clear mind, and let the paper do what it was created to do; inform, entertain, and most importantly, give you something to talk about, some opinion to go spread to whomever gives you the time of day. Use the paper to change your mind, or back-up what you had thought before. Regardless, let the paper be the means of your news. Let it become your source of information; help it regain its place amongst the top competitors. After all, it’s the least you can do.


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You-Tube killed the newspaper’s stars