For one who honed his journalism skills on the traditional ink-smeared newspapers and the rattling sounds of the dinosaur-sized printer running on the opposite side of the wall behind my chair, the debate of newsprint’s sustainability will always push my sugar-level a notch higher.
Almost everyone around the table insist that the days of the traditional newsprint is over. Their points; increasing use of mobile devices, people wanting news to reach them faster, rise of social media, increasing production cost and of course, the emerging Gen Y who would blankly stare at anything that they cannot swipe or pinch their fingers on.
While traditionalist like me can rebuke with increasing adex on newspaper media and allegedly rising readership amongst those in their 30’s, I prefer to argue with practicality rather than sleep-inducing statistics.
The newspaper cannot die because….
– The nasi lemak and mee-hoon industry will suffer due to the lack of wrapping material.
– The fish monger at the market would turn to plastic bags which is less environmental friendly and more toxic for your fish head curry.
– More cockroaches and flies will invade our homes since our deadliest weapon no longer exist.
– The cat’s pee and pooh will fill our houses as glossy magazines are no match for the super-absorbent newspaper.
– Somehow, wiping my office’s glass window and glass door with my iPad does not have the same fingerprints-free effect.
– I cannot see how a bunch of network wires and USB cables can take the place of young boys wrapping up pages of newspapers into a makeshift soccer ball.
– And finally, instead of being rocked to sleep on a hot humid afternoon by the shouts of “old newspaper! Surat khabar lama!” from the back-lane, I now have to listen to “old iPads! Tablets lama!“