Newspaper

Sitting in a computer lab, behind a fully-networked computer with internet access. Leaning back, reading Friday's USA Today Money section.

Why was I just doing that? It's just plain odd. I'm sitting at a workstation with a limitless infinity of dynamic information just a few clicks away, and I'm looking at a three-day-old static hard copy of out-of-date financial news.

At home, I'd always read the paper downstairs in the kitchen. The paper never even made it up to the computer room. If it ever did, it's because the newspaper attempted to hyperlink, but failed because the medium isn't interactive. In the apartment, we don't get the paper because we'd never read it, it's not worth the monthly investment, and cable TV presents more news every instant than we could possibly use.

What's possibly even more ironic about the situation I just found myself in is that the article I was reading, the top financial story McPaper had to offer last Friday concerned AOL. An internet service provider. A provider, whose financial information, had I fancied to research, is available 4 clicks away.

I wouldn't have even brought this up, but when I find myself engaged in behavior that I myself regard as odd, a strange, out-of-body feeling overcomes me that must be documented every time it takes place.

But with the internet and 24-hour cable news, why do we need papers? They only serve to provide us with updates on matters that their editors deem important. The internet lets us go a little deeper and allow a specified sub-group decide what is newsworthy in a smaller community of like-minded individuals. Publishing for a wide, general audience in print is even more outdated than the information that was just published.

Then there's those out there who claim that the internet isn't accessible to everyone. I'd like to know how they're reading this right now, and I'd also have them know that any public library in the country provides free internet access, which, while time limits are usually enforced, the connection speed cannot be beat. Everyone else is apparently subscribed to AOL, according to USA Today's statement that there are currently (well, as of last Thursday night) 34 million subscribers worldwide.

There's 34 million people in the world?
With a computer?
And a credit card account?
And no other ISP to turn to?

And there's 34 million AOL CD's circulating the globe?

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22July2k2