Old Wine in A New Bottle: A Mediamorphosis Approach to Realising Nigerian Newspaper Potentials in an Online Era

Abdullateef Mohammed

Abstract

Information plays a crucial role in every society. The media of every society is responsible for transmitting assorted information to a wide range of diverse audiences through multiple channels, including newspapers, magazines, radio, television and of course, the new media (Internet). In a world where the Internet is becoming the fastest growing medium, technologies like computers and smartphones now enable people to access online news sites to read stories and share with others. Printed newspapers, particularly in Nigeria, have managed to thrive over the years, despite projections of its extinction by some communication experts. Using the Mediamorphosis theory as a base, this study takes readers on a journey to understanding the survival strategies employed by older mediums like the printed newspapers to weather the new media storm. Complimentarily, opinions of purposively selected respondents from Zaria, Kaduna state (n=115) were analysed to determine the motives behind their preference of either online or hardcopy papers. Findings supported the view that in many settings still, there will be those who prefer to read the news the old way and that the new media, as at this time, mainly serve as a functional complement and not an outright replacement to traditional newspapers. The study recommends fact-checking, better marketing as strategies to bridge a credibility gap reported by respondents to exist in the use of both mediums.




Keywords


mediamorphosis; media convergence; newspaper readership; Nigeria

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