Why it is Important to Read the NewspaperMarch 30, 2016
News is one of the most important things in most people’s lives. No matter what you do for a living, chances are you’re engaged with the news at some level on a daily basis. On most days of the week, something is happening on a local, regional, national or global scale that merits headline coverage. For a lot of people, the first question that comes to mind each morning is, “What are the latest news headlines?”
Whether a particular news item is exciting and uplifting, tragic and scary, or sensationalistic and trivial, it’s likely to be a topic of conversation at some point in the hours and days ahead between you and your friends, family and work colleagues, as well as random strangers at grocery stores and coffee shops.
People get their news these days from a variety of sources, including television, radio, magazines and the Internet. However, newspapers remain the most time-honored medium through which news is delivered to people of all ages throughout the country. More than half of the world’s adults read a paper each day.
The Benefits of Reading a Newspaper
The uses of newspaper reading are numerous. For starters, a well-rounded paper provides coverage of global and local news, weather forecasts and a whole host of entertainment and sports topics. Additionally, newspapers can keep you informed of nearby store openings, sales and job opportunities.
Nearly 90 percent of Americans say they prefer to get their news straight from a reliable source such as a newspaper rather than hearing it from friends online or through other sources. Newer media come and go, but the format of newspapers has held strong throughout the decades thanks to the following features.
One of the biggest benefits of reading newspapers on a regular basis is doing so keeps you informed of all the latest world events. Depending on what’s currently happening in the world, the news could involve matters of high consequence, such as war, climate, the economy and national elections, or topics that are arguably more trivial, such as political sex scandals, celebrity gossip and debates on minor issues.
It’s useful to stay updated on news items as they unfold. By reading newspaper on a daily basis, you’re better equipped to form opinions on things that are currently happening, and you’re also likelier to be prepared if a world event has a direct impact on your life.
Another major advantage to reading newspapers daily is you’re always up to date on important local news. Whether you live in or near a big city or small town, things are happening regularly that affect your community in various ways. Some of the news might involve local elections or public policy, while other stories might concern special events, such as the unveiling of bridges or public monuments, or the opening of new businesses in your area.
Of course, hardly a day goes by without some bad local news, whether it happens to involve a fire, a fatal traffic accident or a holdup. Still, it’s crucial to be informed about both good and bad things that affect your community, because that will keep you up-to-date on public safety issues, new attractions, upcoming elections, changes in local policy, and other things that concern adults in general.
Newspapers are also a great source of information on daily and weekly weather forecasts. Whether it’s a day of work or leisure, the weather situation could largely determine what you’ll choose to wear and how you’ll go about commuting to and from your points of destination. For example:
- If your daily commute to work involves numerous blocks of walking and at least one connection on your local public transit system, harsh weather could impact the time it will take to make that commute, not to mention the warmer clothes you’ll need to wear in order to reach your destination comfortably.
- In the event of snow or heavy storms, your regular commute might be impossible. That’s a crucial thing to know before you even attempt to head outside.
- Likewise, vacation plans and trips to the mall can also be impacted by unusual weather.
Basically, weather is just one of those unavoidable factors you must take into consideration, regardless of your plans.
Serious topics are not the only things covered in most newspapers. Fact is, the majority of readers see equal importance in the areas of entertainment and recreation. After all, what would a day be like if there were no music, movies or fun activities to distract from the often-dreary realities of world events and politics as usual? Entertainment coverage can range from reviews of the latest movies and music releases, to previews of upcoming concerts and theatrical productions.
Whatever your preferred poison, newspapers are an excellent source of info on the dates and places of bands that are coming to town, as well as movies that are playing at various theaters in your area. If Hollywood gossip strikes your curiosity, newspapers can keep you informed of all the latest info on your favorite celebs. Even if you’re simply into staying home and watching television, newspapers are a trusty source for info on channels and airtimes of must-see programs on basic TV and cable.
For people who get their kicks from watching and analyzing ball games, speed races and wrestling matches, newspapers are also a plentiful source of sports coverage. No matter which sports are in season, chances are there’s a decisive win or an upset to be reported from the grounds of one of the major sporting leagues.
When a home team is in contention, the coverage no doubt has readers glued to the pages as headline after feverish headline gins up the local spirit. Even in communities far removed from any major league teams or professional athletes, sports sections are one of the main priorities of coverage in newspapers, and it’s all because of the importance sports hold in the hearts of most Americans.
If entertainment of a more quickly digestible form is your kind of medicine, newspapers feature plenty to choose from in the comics section. As one of the oldest forms of entertainment in the printed medium, comic strips can be either humorous or thought-provoking. At times, they manage to be both.
Even in today’s world of countless entertainment options, people of all ages continue to be captivated by the simple art of the comic strip. You might be looking for a quick laugh, or perhaps a joke to share with your friends or coworkers in the hours ahead, in which case you can always count on the funnies section. On occasion, you might find a strip to be so funny or transcendent in its message that you’ll feel compelled to cut it out and either tack it to your pinboard or scan it for sharing on your social media timeline.
Crosswords and Horoscopes
The fun part of newspapers doesn’t end with the comics section. Many newspapers also feature word games, crossword puzzles, and horoscopes:
- Word games are often fun, because they challenge the naked eye to pick out words from multiple rows and columns of random letters.
- Crossword puzzles are similarly fun, because the challenge is on you to guess the missing word and see if it fits within the corresponding row or column of empty boxes.
- Whether or not you believe in astrology, horoscopes provide interesting food for thought regarding things that might be in store for you in the days ahead.
Coupons and Circulars
Newspapers can also help you save money when you check out the circulars, which feature multiple pages of items that are currently on sale at nearby grocery chains and department stores. And from food and over-the-counter medicine to toiletries, stationery supplies and furniture, the coupon section is a must-check source for people wishing to get more bang for their bucks.
Depending on the size of your household, thrifty coupon usage could ultimately shave hundreds of dollars off your monthly grocery bills. As far as furniture is concerned, that fancy computer table or sofa and loveseat combo could be yours for anywhere from 20 percent to 50 percent off the retail price if you simply browse the coupon section for the latest nearby sale on furnishings.
Perhaps you’re not so interested in the latest news or entertainment stories but would like to know about gigs or yard sales in your area? For all of that and more, there’s the classified ads section, which contains ads for everything from job opportunities to car sales and various other offers that could make or save you money. During times of unemployment, countless readers have browsed the classifieds for everything from day jobs to night shifts to telecommuting opportunities.
Some people have landed high-paying dream jobs after following up on leads through the classifieds, while many others have found part-time positions to supplement their incomes. Whatever it is you might be looking for — an office-temp gig, a used van, a secondhand big-screen television — chances are you’ll find it if you diligently browse the classifieds in your local newspaper.
There are a lot of lonely people in this world, but no one really has to stay that way. For every person sitting alone by the television on a Saturday night, there’s probably a soulmate in a similar situation within a 10 to 20–mile radius around town. Whether you’re young, middle-aged, or older, there’s no reason to accept being lonely for too long, which is why newspapers have long featured personal ads so readers can find romantic partnerships.
All types of singles submit ads to the personals, which have been responsible for pairing up perfectly compatible individuals whose paths would otherwise never cross. If you consider yourself the shy type, there’s no need to worry, because shyness is a common trait among singles who frequent the personals. In a sense, the personals could be seen as singles bars for shy people.
If you run a local business, newspapers are one of the best media in which to advertise. Though many business owners assume the best way to reach customers is through television commercials, the costs of airtime can eat away at any profits generated from the increased exposure and resultant foot traffic.
Newspapers, by contrast, offer an affordable medium in which all types of businesses can get products and services exposed to consumers within a given range of distribution. In fact, some people have amassed fortunes by taking one tiny ad that generates business in a local newspaper and repeating that ad in thousands of papers nationwide.
The Intellectual Importance of Reading Newspapers
The value of reading a newspaper extends far beyond what you get in the news, entertainment, lifestyle and money-saving realms. If you regularly read a well-written, well-balanced paper, it could also help stimulate brain function for improved performance in the following areas.
When it comes to the most critical news stories of the day, newspapers generally provide more than just coverage. They also offer insights that help readers form opinions on a range of topics. In many ways, this is a good thing, because issues are often vague and abstract to readers, many of whom might lack the background in certain topics that galvanize the news. Things to keep in mind:
- On hot-button topics, the average reader is likelier to come away with a more rational stance when guided along through the facts by an informed commentator.
- However, it’s crucial for readers to know how to distinguish fact from opinion, particularly on hardball topics.
- Likewise, each journalist should make a byline disclosure as to whether his or her pieces are straight coverage or opinion–based.
Newspapers also help readers keep a balanced perspective on stories and issues. While a lot of readers have biases, a responsible newspaper will tailor coverage in a way that presents news stories from all angles so each reader can draw his or her own conclusion.
Of course, some readers do get caught up in ideological-based thinking, which can be problematic when the ideology in question is built on a narrative that rejects certain empirical truths. There are news sources that pander to this phenomenon by filtering stories through a chosen narrative, all of which can be dangerous when it reinforces a disengagement from reality. By avoiding this trap, responsible newspapers keep readers informed, which in turn helps foster a public that acts in its own best interests.
As people age, one of the biggest advantages of reading newspapers is the positive effects reading has on mental health. In a sense, the mind is like most other parts of the body. The less it’s exercised, the weaker and less flexible it becomes. Just like how sedentary people are more prone to develop physical limitations, people who don’t put their minds to use are likelier to become stunted in their cognitive abilities.
Reading is one of the best ways to prevent or combat the latter process, because reading is an act of mental engagement. When it comes to the habit of reading on a regular basis, newspapers are the best enabler because most are printed daily and even delivered to the doorsteps of subscribers.
How to Strategically Read the Newspaper
In the fast-paced world of time management, we often skim through the daily or weekly paper but never get much out of it. That is because we do not know how to read newspapers effectively. In order to disseminate the content of your daily newspaper in the allotted 15-minute break of coffee and your morning treat you need to know what you are looking for and where to find it. This will break down how to approach the newspaper as a competitive businessman, but truly, the way you read the paper is specifically based off of what you are looking for.
Before you even open the daily newspaper, think about what you want to find out about. Where would anything related to your business be? Where are the pieces located that will provide you with high-quality information for business meetings or work conversation? Reading the newspaper daily is essential preparation to be knowledgeable on a subject before it is brought up in conversation. By knowing about it ahead of time you can draw your own conclusions and approach the topic without others influencing your initial reception of information. Know what you want from your newspaper before opening it, then dive in.
Navigating a daily newspaper can be annoying depending on their structure. Luckily they are organized by their general section. Already know the score of last night’s game? Remove the sports section. Not interested in the arts or music? Remove that section. You can get your weather from the app on your phone or on the ride to work so don’t worry about that page. Remember, news organizations structure their newspapers with the most pertinent information on the front page. Skimming through the front page is important because it is what almost everyone will know about. Finding the most valuable articles can be done with the table of contents.
All you get is a headline, so how do you know the article is worth your time? How should you read a newspaper headline? The headlines have a very strategic structure. Subject – Verb –Object is the standard way to write a headline. This means the first word or two is all you should care about. The Eagles are the subject. The win is the action. The Super Bowl is the object. Skim down the headlines and read the first two words. Highlight the subjects that matter to you. This will save you up to a minute of reading time. This is a minute that could allow you to get through another short article.
Highlighting the news. When reading a paper you will reference something you had read later in the day or week. The most effective way to successfully find the fact you read in the newspaper is by using a highlighter. This will also point out what you have already read when you revisit the paper in the afternoon. Highlights are an effective way to save time as you read the daily newspaper, and when you revisit the daily newspaper.
Yes, the newspaper is the originator of click bait. Sometimes the front page can be skipped entirely. How do you know when to skip the front page? When you are emotionally moved by the headline and picture yet they do not offer up any new information. This is essentially clickbait news. The front page will be sensualized content that is in the political spotlight. Whether it be a person making a blunder or an emotional war image. The news is trying to sell their paper and they know what the majority of the United States is invested in. So their front page news will reach a broad range of people, but you can find out what happened at the water cooler from a friend while you are effectively able to improve your knowledge on something relevant to your industry specifically.
Mitchell’sNY for Newspaper Delivery in New York City
In New York City, residents have relied on Mitchell’sNY for newspaper delivery since 1946. Whether you’re a daily reader of the city’s major papers or a subscriber to the Sunday editions, we’ll bring them hot off the press and straight to your home, office, hotel or wherever else you may be.
From papers that cover world news and the financial sector to magazines on everything from entertainment and travel to science and photography, we deliver dailies, weeklies, monthlies, and quarterlies from all corners of the publishing world. The advantages of newspaper and magazine reading are numerous. To that end, Mitchell’sNY has honored the importance of newspapers in daily life for seven decades. Contact Mitchell’sNY today to schedule your newspaper and magazine deliveries.