A Broader Look at a Student Newspaper under Disruptive Changes

Minh Q. Huynh, Nicholas Walsh, Scott D McDonald
InSITE 2019  •  2019  •  pp. 335-350
Aim/Purpose: This paper focuses on student newspapers in the midst of digital transfor-mation and the impact this has on their future survival.

Background: The ramification of digital transformation on commercial newspapers is not new, but looking at it from a big picture helped to us to connect to what has been happening with student newspapers across the United States.

Methodology: Through a limited review of selected student newspapers across the country, this paper attempted to identify key challenges, trends, and best practices to determine the current as well as future state of this media model.

Contribution: The knowledge gained was then used to inform a transition of a specific stu-dent newspaper to cope with its own challenges and to share this condition with other schools around the nation.

Findings: Due to the digital transformation, the traditional student newspapers have been disrupted and are going through the transition into digital platforms similar to those in the commercial newspapers. Yet, the value of the content is still important.

Recommendations for Practitioners: Rapidly advanced technology transform student newspapers into a real-time, highly customized, personal, rich with multimedia format. This means the newspapers must be able to reach where their readers are and deliver what their readers ask for.

Recommendation for Researchers: The transition of newspapers to be more digitized calls for more studies on the rise of new generation of readership, the relentless changes in technology, the search for a sustainable revenue model for e-newspaper, as well as issues in self-generated journalism.

Impact on Society: As more people gain access to portable digital devices, the desire for hard copy newspapers that report yesterday’s news is rapidly decreasing. In today’s world, the news is instantaneous and the lag time between the event and it being reported is sometimes mere seconds.

Future Research: Research on “fake news” is important as newspapers become more digitalized.
student newspapers, digital media, hybrid approach, digital transformation
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