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Columbus Dispatch Saves Time, Money and Jobs In Ohio

Updated on September 8, 2013
Founded July 1, 1871 a few years after the American Civil War
Founded July 1, 1871 a few years after the American Civil War | Source

The Cat and the Kindle

New communications technologies are continually bringing us new ways of using print media and one of the most fascinating is the gradual change of American newspapers. The Kindle® and other eReaders may be responsible. Broadsheet newspapers are difficult to hold and we end up folding them several ways and losing sections. They fall on the floor and the cat comes running in from another room, jumps on them, and slides over the hardwood floor to his next destination. Cats cannot do that with Kindles®. A "smaller" newspaper may be in order.

The Columbus Dispatch in Central Ohio has planned to change from its long-time broadsheet format to a more compact print media. It will keep its familiar sections, while taking its place as the first print paper globally to employ the three-around printing method. The change form hand-set type to computers was huge, but this is bigger. Presses will be converted during Autumn 2011.

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Technology Saves and Creates Jobs

This is a job-saving and jobs creation move on the part of the Dispatch as well, capturing business form at least two other nearby cities. The Columbus paper agrees with the Gannett Co. Inc. to print both The Cincinnati Enquirer and Kentucky Enquirer in the three-around technique by 2012.

This brings a new, more compact version of print media to the reporting of the 2012 US Presidential Race and the NASA/SpaceX/Other Mission to Mars. Sales and circulation will likely increase.

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Newspaper printing press, late 2000s.The Makings of a Modern Newspaper- the Production of 'the Daily Mail' in Wartime, London, UK, 1944
Newspaper printing press, late 2000s.
Newspaper printing press, late 2000s. | Source
The Makings of a Modern Newspaper- the Production of 'the Daily Mail' in Wartime, London, UK, 1944
The Makings of a Modern Newspaper- the Production of 'the Daily Mail' in Wartime, London, UK, 1944 | Source
People collect newspapers with famous headlines.
People collect newspapers with famous headlines. | Source

Antique Printing Press

Old screw-type press, London UK.
Old screw-type press, London UK. | Source

What Is Three-Around Printing?

Printing a broadsheet newspaper requires the use of large cylinders upon which the newsprint (broadsheet paper) travels around.

In the method of three-around printing, the cylinders of a printing press print three sheets of paper instead of two, all in just one revolution of a cylinder. This method saves time, material, and money, while using existing presses.

The three-around method was perfected and marketed back in 2008 and The Columbus Dispatch is the first to opt in. Overall, increasing numbers of American newspapers are reducing the physical size of their publications as have Europeans news publications.

The Big Change

For readers, page size will be the biggest change, making the paper more manageable:

  • Old Size: 22" by 11.5" page
  • New Size:14.6" by 10.5" page (about the size of a sheet from a long legal pad)

The local newspaper here has recently increased in price nearly every year since the late 2000s and many readers have dropped or reduced subscriptions. Others read it online by subscription. Still others read it in the local coffee houses. Offering smaller pages and more color in a daily and weekend newspaper, the Dispatch will hopefully maintain or reduce its current price. Jobs at the paper are expected to increase.This is all good to hear and will likely keep newspapers alive for a few more decades into the 21st Century.

Another step that is in discussions with newspapers around the country is the addition of Youtube-like videos into hardcopy stories.

I saw the first video resume here in 1994, made to the size of an old A-drive floppy disk and that was a gigantic technology breakthrough. The event was on the national news and the young man that developed and sent his resume in this manner was hired immediately by a local ad and graphics agency.

Now, we can have a video in the newspaper.

The new size of the newspaper will put in at about the size of The National Enquirer. The new Dispatch may, in fact, sell more copies on a stand beside that tabloid than it does now on a shelf under the magazines in the grocery store. It will take up less space and be easier to hold and read, but the cat will have lost a mode of transportation.

A comfortable cat enjoying a newspaper of the larger size.
A comfortable cat enjoying a newspaper of the larger size. | Source


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    • Maren Morgan M-T profile image

      Maren Elizabeth Morgan 6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Print media will never die out!!!! It is just a wonderful tactile sensation to hold a book while reading on the couch and then nap with it on your abdomen... :D Thanks, Patty, for an interesting hub. Loved the cat pic, too.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

      I always learn something interesting from your hubs. Another great article. Thank you.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      I agree with Flora. I find it very hard to read for a long period from my computer and especially my phone. I still haven't come around to getting an electronic reader. I still prefer my paper and books in print. I have over a hundred ebooks and still go out and buy the printed ones. It's gonna take quite an adjustment for me.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      I feel the same way, Flora. The Library of Congress is a wonder to see with books of all ages; it is becoming a museum of sorts with the advance of online communication, Kindle, and others. The newspaper is familiar to hold, even though unwieldy, and I hope we have it for much longer.

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image

      FloraBreenRobison 6 years ago

      I hope print media never dies out completely.