As more news migrates to the internet, there is a small risk that some of the historical information in print newspapers may be lost in the transition. However, both commercial and noncommercial firms and organizations have been successful in capturing historical newspaper information and translating it onto the internet. As well, libraries are very good at archiving newspaper information. This suggests the risk of lost information from bankrupt newspapers is manageable.
News has not died. In fact, the demand for news continues to grow rapidly. The difference is the internet has resulted in people becoming accustomed to getting more news selection, more specialized news and more customization of how they read the news (via RSS readers and equivalents). Thus, what has changed is that the media on which news is delivered is transitioning from print form to the digital domain (see The Death of Google News Archive).
For genealogy, the benefits of the breadth and depth of the internet as a tool to understand our ancestors should far outweigh any transition costs that may occur, including the loss of print newspapers. And, finally, it is important to remember the genealogy of one group in particular will benefit hugely from the death of print newspapers. The trees will thank us.
Genealogy and the Economy
This article is part of a new ongoing series on genealogy and the economy. As the global economy goes into a deep recession, we will continue to report on the impact the economy will have on the world of genealogy. Below are other articles in this series:
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