Turning phones into e-readers and newspapers into history

Posted: December 22, 2009 in Multimedia Journalism
Tags: , , ,

The evolution of new media continues and implications for journalism abound.

I found this web site a few months back when judging some college newspaper web sites. It’s called Issuu.com and was being used, at least on the journalism sites, to post widgets on the news sites of the .pdf, page-turnable document versions of their college publications. I’ve since uploaded a few .pdfs of my own and found the process an easy and efficient way to publish your print publications. Readers can easily read the documents online, embed them on their own sites or print the .pdfs out and read them in paper form. And, did I mention? Issuu.com is free.

Now, Issuu.com is launching apps for the Google Android and Apple iPhone/iTouch phones. Again, technology is enhancing the reading experience for any digital publication on a hand-held device in a way that should make the distributors of the Amazon Kindle (and other e-reader devices) nervous. It should also serve as yet another red flag to newspaper publishers that their days of pushing out news on dead trees are numbered. Anyone holding on hopelessly to the idea that newspapers will be around in 10 years is dreaming.

The good news is publishers, editors, copy desks and reporters will have jobs (at least of few of us will) in this new media ecosystem. Take a look at the pagination of some of these digital editions and you’ll see that page design, typography, editing and quality reporting and writing are going to be necessary and valued skills in the years to come.

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