News papers



There has been talk recently that News Papers in the form that we now know, are doomed and to go the way of the dinosaurs ceasing publication. Any copy in the future will be entirely electronic, and only available to be read from a computer screen or a like device. I sincerely hope this is incorrect, as I really enjoy my daily paper in it’s present form. But like it or like it not, one by one our newspapers are slowly disappearing. They are no longer able to foot it against competing media for advertising. For me, a newspaper in it’s present form is one of the day’s pleasures. It’s informative, and keeps me abreast of all I need to know. Over the years papers have undergone many changes, in fact not all have actually failed financially and fallen by the wayside, some were purchased by their competition to deliberately shut them down. I suppose too Television has paid it’s part in this ‘progress’. Evening papers were amongst the first to go when they found they couldn’t compete with the immediacy of TV’s six o’clock news. Also, seeing that there is only so much paid advertising to go around, when they had to share the little that was available it wasn’t enough to justify publication,


The public as the end user, for years had to be on the ball to collect his paper early especially on wet days, or as soon as it was delivered. Fail to do this and the penalty was being presented with a soggy mess; unless of course you were able to bribe your delivery boy to put your paper in a safe dry place. All this today has taken a turn for the better, papers now prior to delivery, are tightly wrapped in ‘cling wrap’ at the printers to protect and weather proof them.


I also remember brother David was once a delivery boy of the Dunedin Evening Star. He was paid the princely sum of two shillings and six pence, (That translates to 25 cents) for six day week of deliveries. However David over a year of trudging over his delivery route was able to turn his financial reward into a brand new BSA bicycle, a remarkable achievement.


Once when we lived in Queenstown, the town didn’t have a newspaper delivery service. As well you had to wait until noon when the daily busses arrived in from Dunedin, and Invercargill. I would then join the queues to buy a paper. So when we visited Dunedin, one of my pleasures in life, was getting up early, bringing in the Otago Daily Times, going back to bed, sometimes bathed in sunlight to read the morning news. Living in Queenstown with the mountains all around we didn’t get such a thing as the early morning sun. I could do it now, seeing that we are living in Christchurch city, but I wouldn’t wish to read today’s paper in bed as today’s newspapers seem to use an ink that isn’t ‘fast’. Anytime you read a paper today I find the ink from the paper contaminates everything it comes in contact with, hands, light coloured trousers, and especially white bedlinen.


One would think that with the extension of television and radio stations news services, newspapers would have folded their tents and shuffled off the scene long ago. Not so, we has been blessed with the arrival of a new phenomena, the free ‘throw away paper’ or ‘neighbourhood paper’. These around where I live are very popular and financed entirely from advertising revenue. Here in our street we receive about three different publications weekly. They are a refreshing change too from what we usually are served up as ‘News’. Palestine, Afghanistan are never mentioned, neither is the mindless Political bickering that’s carried on in Wellington. Just plain local news, and surprise, surprise, it’s exactly what the locals want.


Another area that has been greatly effected by ‘Progress’ and that’s photographs and colour printing. Early photographs were built up from a series of graded dots as well as in a colour scale of grey to black not a sharp image but acceptable. Now with the advances in technology we receive sharp colour pictures which have as well, a degree of immediacy, and can even be transmitted over the phone.





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