You are going to read an article about newspapers and the Internet. Six sentences have been removed from the article. Choose from the sentences A–G the one which fits each gap (37–42). There is one extra sentence which you do not need to use.


Do newspapers have a future?

by Stephen Glover


Experts have been predicting the death of newspapers for over 50 years. Television was supposed to kill them off, and it did have some small effect. The sales of some papers began to decline from the middle 1950s, when commercial television started, and a few went out of business. But other papers prospered and new ones were launched, some thriving so much that they sold several million copies a day.

So, those who thought television would finish off the press were wrong. (37)……………  Almost every daily and Sunday national newspaper in this country is selling fewer copies than it was five years ago. In some cases, the decline has been dramatic.

The Internet, of course, is not the only factor. The natural markets for some papers, those aimed at industrial workers for instance, was already shrinking in the late 20th century. (38)……………  The consequence has been a general attempt to make big savings by cutting costs wherever possible.

A disaster, then? Some people argue that the decline in readership of newspapers does not matter because many of us, and perhaps a majority of those under 30, are reading them online. (39)……………  So if one adds all the readers of newspapers on the Internet to those who prefer a newsprint version, there may be as many, if not more, people looking at the national press as there were ten or 15 years ago.

There will, they say, still be lots of publications offering a wide variety of views and articles, as well as plenty of opportunities for writers. Indeed, one of the world’s most successful media bosses recently predicted that newspapers would reach new heights in the 21st century. (40)……………

This sounds sensible, and I hope it is right, but
I find it difficult to be quite so optimistic. The problem is that no one has yet figured out a way to make much money out of the Internet. A regular reader of an online version of a newspaper is worth 10p a month to the publisher. (41)…………… Also, the hard copy that he or she reads attracts much more advertising than the Internet version.

Most newspapers obtain over half their income from copies sold. In other words, online papers are living off their newsprint parents. Newsprint is where the money is. It follows that, as increasing numbers of readers swap their daily paper for a few minutes online, the breadth and quality of what they read will gradually go down. (42)……………  When I buy a newspaper I support expensive and ambitious journalism; if I read it online I do not.