I had stopped reading newspapers for about two years now.
I do not share the common sentiment that the newspapers have become too sensationalist. Everything has a sensationalist bias these days, and even though newspapers do tend to suffer from more than their fair share, one doesn’t have to indulge in it. Mainstream newspapers in general do take their responsibility of reporting news seriously, and the key is to skillfully ignore most of the items reported in the front page.
I also do not share the other common sentiment that newspapers have become outdated in the age of Internet. In fact, for someone like me who isn’t looking for constant updates, it’s the internet which brings the relevance back to newspapers because of its curated content. Indian online news portals which are well-curated (and I frequent a few) tend to lack the breadth of the coverage of a newspaper. I suppose I’m more into informed news/opinion than current news.
Why, then, did I stop reading newspaper? Because newspapers are appalling in their ability to inform me. I lack the historical perspective of whether the quality of newspaper reporting has been going down (in India), but it’s at a point where reading newspaper is quite like watching Indian soap operas – could have been good, but way too dull.
Meaningful facts and figures are mostly missing. Personal opinions are often misrepresented as logical conclusions. Unintentionally. However, there is no obvious idiocy or oversight for me to laugh at. The end result is not entertaining. It’s the overwhelming mediocrity of the entire act that gets to me.
That is why I had stopped reading the newspaper and started living happily ever after.