E-books over physical prints. Digital textbooks over hard copies. Online news articles over broadsheets. Digital magazine subscriptions over printed issues in the mail. These are just some of the many changes in publishing and journalism that have occurred since the rise of digital media.
Since having access to smartphones, laptops, and tablets is becoming more popular, it’s only right that the demand for digital media surpasses those of print. Plus, it’s easier to access educational, work, or entertainment materials through the internet because it immediately eliminates the hassle of carrying multitudes of printed documents and books.
However, with this growing dependence on digitized versions of printed media, there are many aspects that are failed to be considered. For instance, when publishing and journalism outlets go digital, many employee positions can cease to be needed, which can then add to the increasing rate of unemployment.
Another aspect is sacrificing the students’ comprehension and learning in exchange for convenience as well as riding the digital trend. And the last thing that isn’t taken into account is the fact that preferring digital media over print can increase health-related dangers among students and adults.
Provides Employment Opportunities
The publishing industry is one of the most successful in the field because it supplies the demands for both literary and educational purposes. In turn, publishing houses provide employment opportunities to everyone involved in the printing, manufacturing, and distribution of books as well as other print materials.
With the increasing demand for digitalization and user convenience, many publishers are struggling to adapt to the change. Some look to cost-cutting options such as opting for warehouse forklift rental instead of owning one to transport raw materials inside their factories.
There has also been a shift in employment demands to cater to this change. Companies are looking for individuals that are knowledgeable about writing, editing, or Photoshop, as opposed to having only the first two skills mentioned.
With this gradually increasing demand for digitized over physical copies for both literary and educational books, the publishing industry will have to adapt albeit sacrificing employees in the process. This can create a huge employment gap between those with digital skills and the existing workforce.
Promotes Better Learning and Comprehension
In the educational sector, many schools and universities are starting to opt for digital copies of textbooks, as well as reading and instructional materials. The reason for this is that digital versions prove to be more practical in terms of accessibility, affordability, and convenience.
However, this ongoing transition from physical to digital copies of textbooks in schools fails to take the student’s comprehension into account. In fact, there are studies proving that students can learn and comprehend text better in print form rather than in digital versions.
This is because breadth and ease of access for online materials don’t necessarily equate to the fact that an individual understands what they read. The findings from the studies conducted showed that although there is a preference for digital media, the overall comprehension for print media is significantly better.
Preferring digital methods over physical ones in the educational sector can also add to the already existing gap between privileged and marginalized students. This change puts the latter category of students in a further oppressed state because they don’t have access to technology and stable internet connection inside their households.
Encourages Time Away from Gadgets
In the digital age when everything seems to be accessible through online means, having the option to peel your eyes away from your gadgets shouldn’t be taken for granted. Kids, adolescents, and young adults are all at high risk from serious health conditions brought about by prolonged usage of devices.
The more that people spend in front of computers and cellphones for school, work, or entertainment, the more they are vulnerable to chronic health problems. Being exposed to screens for a long duration can add physical strain to the body, cause sleep deprivation, and increase the risk for obesity.
Too much of anything can have detrimental effects on an individual. This is also the case for too much exposure to gadgets and devices, which can be promoted by digitizing educational materials and textbooks for school.
While going paperless in the publishing industry can have environmental and sustainable benefits, it can also have devastating effects on the employment, education, and health sectors. There is no stopping the shift towards digitizing because it poses plenty of benefits for the economy. But there should also be no discounting the significant benefits that keeping the print media alive has.