Do you read in print or online?

Published 1:22 pm Saturday, October 3, 2015

by Rebecca Chappell

As I sit here and think of my next idea for the newspaper, my mind quickly drifts into thinking about the number one topic of the week: the weather. Although the forecast is looking better than it did earlier in the week, I can’t help but assume I won’t be participating in any outside activities this over the next few days. So now the question is how do I spend my weekend?

Well, one thing I would love to do is catch up on my reading, something I just can’t seem to find the time do anymore.

When I picture reading, I imagine the perfect scenario of sitting in my comfy clothes on the couch, with a blanket wrapped around me, cuddled up somewhere near a fireplace with a book in my hand. Yes, I just said a book in my hand. No, I don’t mean a Kindle.

Now I wonder how many people actually read printed books anymore. It seems that more people are reading on their tablets or laptops. It’s hard to imagine that print versions of books are becoming uncommon, but it’s true.

It’s not just books either, as everything can be read online or downloaded nowadays. People are getting their news online as well lately. The local weather stations have electronic sources, magazines are online and so are many newspapers.

But as I have learned lately, the online version isn’t the same as the printed version. For books, the information is the same, but as far as the Weather Channel, the magazine and the newspaper go, the online version lacks information that the printed information has.

Yes, the highlights from the news are put online, but the little things, the fun things and the full stories aren’t always put on the electronic sources for news.

And more importantly, you just don’t get the same feel from reading something online, as you do from reading something in print. There is something about information being put in black and white, printed out, right in front of your face that makes it feel more real as far as the news goes, and there is something about holding a printed book in your hands, that is just so much more comfortable than holding a technological device.

Not to mention, that many will say staring at a computer screen for too long is bad for your eyes.

Now as I sit here and think about what I’m going to read or reread this weekend, I’ll leave you with you a couple of thoughts and questions. For starters, do you read in print or online? If you do read online, do you miss reading things in print? If you’re reading this and you’re online doing it, this and the rest of the paper could have been delivered to your house this morning. If you are a subscriber to The Tidewater News, then you are enjoying it that way — the comfortable and healthier way — while cuddled up on your couch with your morning coffee, because it is more than likely raining outside. But, if you aren’t, you could be.

REBECCA CHAPPELL is a staff writer at The Tidewater News. She can be contacted at 562-3187 or