OPINION: Let’s talk print, a dying breed

Photo Taken In Kln, Germany

Jamie Brock, Correspondent

What exactly is print? Print is produced (books, newspapers, magazines, etc.), especially in large quantities, by a mechanical process involving the transfer of text, images, or designs to paper (oxford languages).

Throughout the majority of my time at Opelika High School, I tried to stay involved in different activities that involve writing, photography, interviews, stories, etc. I have always enjoyed writing and taking pictures in my spare time. Joining the yearbook staff my junior year of high school really introduced me to another world. I was able to connect more with the people around me, especially my classmates and teachers, but mostly myself. 

Yearbook was full of fun, writing, photography, and more importantly, constructive criticism. Most of the stories I wrote were edited to fix things like grammar, punctuation and to overall make them more appealing to the reader. I finally learned how to not be so shy, and how to put myself out there and make more friends, all while doing the things I loved.

Over the years, technology has become far more advanced than I could ever imagine. This allows for lots of things to move from paper to online. My family now reads the news on a website instead of reading the actual newspaper. Photos are kept in phones and cloud storage more than they are printed nowadays. Even four out of six of my classes this semester are online, including the textbooks. Having everything at my fingertips is not only convenient, it is solely up to me to make sure that all of my responsibilities are taken care of.

Walking around campus, I often see newspaper stands that always seem full. Students usually stick to social media instead of reading an actual newspaper. Sometimes I wonder if people ever think about what advantages come with print:

  • You might find new information through those who write for newspapers, like upcoming events, clubs, things around town, etc
  • Newspapers magazines, yearbooks, and photos give you something physical to hold on to for memories instead of keeping a screenshot in the depths of your phone
  • More opportunities are available for those who are not as technologically advanced
  • You can trade books with friends to share common interests
  • You can learn about different writing and printing styles

Not too long ago I heard someone ask, “Why are yearbooks still a thing? Just make an Instagram”, and it was kind of a blow to the face. But then I remembered not everyone prefers physical books or newspapers, and that’s okay. The world of print will (hopefully) always be available, and will hold the hearts of those who truly love writing.

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