Thursday, August 20, 2009

Yellow Pages, "Little. Yellow. Different."

As print newspapers embrace and imitate the generic exit strategy of moving online, it is sad to see them go. While print may not be the most environmentally sound, the publication effects many families and the communities. Here's a brief list of prints that are flailing in the sea change of technology: Ann Arbor News, Asian Week, Bloomfield Free Press, The Bridge, The Capital Times, Christian Science Monitor, Kansas City Kansan, Kentucky Post, Rhinoceros Times, Tucson Citizen. Personally, in many cases, I just don't believe that there is enough content and useful information to fill a daily print issue. As such, papers are often filled with irrelevant ads and fluff. Turning the paper into "tabloid size" can only stave off extinction for so long.
My tilt today is not against newspapers but with the yellow pages, or super yellow pages, as it were. They used to stack of shoe box-sized phone books stack outside of my apartment building. This huge heap of phone books would seldom be taken into an apartment unit, usually by the old and digital illiterate. Then after a thunderstorm, the pile would turn into a heavy stinking pile of wet paper.
Prior to completely moving online, they forced their way into my home by shrinking the phone book into a 6x9 booklet (wrapped in plastic) that fit into my teeny mailbox. I must admire their thoughtfulness of only providing my with a "Midtown West: October 2009-2010" edition focusing on my local area and not all five boroughs. This little book is going straight to the recycling bin. They may have eluded death this year, but death is imminent.

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