Tag Archives: printing press

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On the Editors’ blog:

The printing press versus Jesus… what year would you vote for?

The invention of the Printing Press in 1439 is currently beating Jesus’ birth in an Intelligent Life online poll on the most important year in history.

With 34 per cent of the votes so far Gutenberg’s press is leading the birth of Jesus (24 per cent), the discovery of DNA (8 per cent), the fall of Nazism (8 per cent) and the beginning of the United States of America (6 per cent).

The poll of more than 2,600 people run by the Economist title, was sparked by an article by Andrew Marr. He and five Economist journalists came up with a rough shortlist for what they believed to be the most important years of all time.

Readers have been asked to write in with their own suggestions, which have included the year photography was invented, the French Revolution in 1789 and the birth of the World Wide Web. You can vote for an existing topic or suggest your own at this link.

Others have a slightly more egotistical angle, a fair number saw the year they were born as the most important…

End print edition of New York Times, argues Netscape co-founder

In Marc Andreessen’s world the Christian Science Monitor wouldn’t be the only traditional print product going online-only.

In this interview in the latest edition of Portfolio, Andreessen, who is co-founder of Ning, Netscape and investor in Digg and Twitter, says the New York Times should cut its print losses and focus on ‘the market of the future’.

If you were running the New York Times, what would you do?
[Andreessen] Shut off the print edition right now. You’ve got to play offence. You’ve got to do what Intel did in ’85 when it was getting killed by the Japanese in memory chips, which was its dominant business. And it famously killed the business – shut it off and focused on its much smaller business, microprocessors, because that was going to be the market of the future. And the minute Intel got out of playing defence and into playing offence, its future was secure. The newspaper companies have to do exactly the same thing.

The financial markets have discounted forward to the terminal conclusion for newspapers, which is basically bankruptcy. So at this point, if you’re one of these major newspapers and you shut off the printing press, your stock price would probably go up, despite the fact that you would lose 90 per cent of your revenue. Then you play offence. And guess what? You’re an internet company.