I heard two things that ticked me off today.
“Print is dead.”
“Theater is not a real major. That’s a hobby.”
Each comment was referring to two very different topics, but the idea behind each was the same: to belittle a passion and try to convince someone that their particular passion is worthless, or at least worth less than others.
The latter was something repeated to me by my sister-in-law, a (you guessed it) theater major. As a newspaper journalist, I hear the first constantly. Both are infuriating.
NEWSFLASH: Newspapers and print aren’t dead. If you need another source, watch this TED Talk by Jacek Utko. Are newspapers and print changing? Absolutely. Are there fewer and fewer jobs? Obviously. Is it dying? NO.
Yes, print journalists are increasingly expected to be a one-man factory spitting out writing, photography and video. Yes, there are fewer jobs and more competition. But the beauty of this is that it pushes us that breathe, sleep and live news to be the best in our field. It pushes us to learn new skills to stay relevant, whether it be radio or TV broadcasting, public relations, advertising, or graphic or web design.
There’s always going to be a demand for us. We may not be pumping out 30-page dailies, but that just means we’ll pour our passion into the print editions we do get to create (check out this semester’s print copies of The Ranger for proof).
And even if the demand dwindles, it’s still not going to die. We won’t let it. We’ll adjust and keep on. Because regardless of the long hours, the ugly Facebook comments and the stress of covering yet another horrible accident or scandal, those of us that are in it for the long haul love print journalism with our entire being.
We’re not going to stop – just like those theater majors and dance majors and graphic design majors and all the others who have heard the same spiel.
Let us have our passion – and go find something that lights YOU on fire.