In another acknowledgment that digital is the future (and present) of newspapers, one of the largest chains of newspapers in the country, Gannett, has announced that they won’t be publishing any election results in their print editions on Wednesday. I have worked with many journalists during my broadcast career and for most of them, election day was the biggest day of the year; to use a trite comparison, it was their Super Bowl. All hands on deck, ridiculously long hours, and the most up to date results were the expectations of the day. As a news consumer, I always looked forward to spreading out the newspaper the next day and devouring all the election results, even in districts (or states) where I had no dog in the fight. Gannett, which owns some of New Jersey’s most notable newspapers, including the Asbury Park Press, the Bergen Record, the Home News & Tribune, and the Courier Post, is promising to have the most current election results on their websites and will be removing their paywall for 48 hours, so that everyone can access the information as it becomes available.

As more newspapers have consolidated, which includes sharing printing presses, deadlines have gotten earlier to the point that having final results of the elections became unlikely. Even though it was inevitable, I guess, it still makes me sad that part of my post-election routine will be eliminated. I have to admit that I stopped getting home delivery of all the newspapers years ago and have gotten my results (and general news) online, so I am part of the problem. Like the rotary phone and the VCR, next day election results in newspapers will be consigned to the dust bin of history.

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