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Should college newspapers kill the print edition?

That’s the advice an L.A. Times editor gave during a recent talk to a gathering of college newspapers. Bryan Murley had a good post about this at his Innovation in College Media blog.

While Murley has been one of the leaders in calling for more focus on new online technologies among college media, he thinks this may be going too far, too soon. The economics, culture and philosophy are just not there yet.

But there was one argument I found most interesting:

“…college students still pick up the campus newspaper. They are not as likely to view the college newspaper web site. That’s something of a chicken-and-egg problem (if people pick up the print product and then see the same thing online, there’s little reason to go online), but it remains a valid argument against going online only. Many students would totally lose touch with their campus newspaper if it were online-only.”

This may well be so. At that same time, it seems like such a contradiction that such a technically literate generation still turns to the print edition, and not the web version.


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