It’s 2016, and We’re Still Arguing Whether Newspapers Should Have Websites

“What if almost the entire newspaper industry got it wrong?”

Thus begins a contrarian argument from Politico’s Jack Shafer, who goes on to suggest in his Oct. 17 column that newspapers wasted billions of dollars by establishing beachheads on digital media.

He cites as evidence a new paper by H. Iris Chyi and Ori Tenenboim of the University of Texas, which notes that local online readership for most newspapers is stagnant or decreasing, with financial performance of online editions “underwhelming.”

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