Will your grandkids ever get their hands dirty from a freshly printed newspaper?




Are you old enough to remember the heyday of newspapers.  Trucks would deliver bundles of papers to your neighborhood where they would be picked up by "newsboys" who could either be boys or girls.

They would be delivered house to house in the neighborhood sometime in the afternoon.  And most moms would remind dads to not let the newsprint get on anything where the ink would wear off.  For the sports-minded kid who wanted to check box scores from baseball games, the paper would be the go-to place.  That meant dirty hands.

Now newspapers are going away.  As they move closer and closer to extinction, I wonder if my three grandchildren will ever hold a newspaper in their hands.  

It wasn't that long ago that newspapers were the eyes and ears for everyday citizens who wanted information about everything from the local city council  to Little League teams.  This is in addition to wire news about national and international happenings.

One of the real rushes when I worked for the Chicago Tribune was when a bundle of newspapers would be delivered to the newsroom.  It was a buzz to get a fresh newspaper that came off the press a few minutes before.  

When I went to the MSU School of Journalism, the old building it was housed in had a newspaper reading room with papers from throughout the country.  I could spend half a day going papers from big and small cities.

That time is gone.  It has been replaced by the web where news reporting has a faint resemblance to what is has been historically.  

I can't wait to take them through the Newseum in Washington, D.C. where they can get a close-up look at newspapers and journalism when it was a lifeline to our way of life.


LINK: Russia enacts new law requiring bloggers to register with government

Could bloggers in this country ever be required to register with the federal government?  

Russia just enacted a law to do just that.  Internet freedoms around the world seem to be in danger.  Could it ever happen here?

Click here for the New York Times story.

LANSING ICE STORM: Local politicians need to learn from former Newark, NJ Mayor Corey Booker

Corey booker
This is the Twitter homepage for Cory Booker.

Several years ago, the city of Newark, New Jersey got hit by a crippling snow storm.  Residents got slammed and their immediate needs were great.  That's when I started following Cory Booker, it's mayor who was out in the streets helping people and then tweeting about it.

He tweeted about his continual activity in the streets where he helped push out cars and in the neighborhoods where he delivered groceries to senior citizens and disposable diapers to new moms.  

My son Justin and I both nodded that this mayor set a real example that deserve to be followed.  We both said he might be a good presidential possibility considering his attitude for service.  His selfless attitude really stuck with me.

His main tool for communicating where he was and what he was doing was Twitter.  It wove everybody together.  

This raises the question about Mayor Virg Bernero and the Lansing City Council and how they interacted with residents and how they helped.  

Did any of them serve like Cory Booker?  Did any of you see them in the neighborhoods?  Should they have been out there in the field and visible to the people they work for?  Do they know how to use Twitter?  Do they understand what it is and its potential for weaving a community together?

Should you take your laptop or your iPad on vacation?

My son and his wife are vacationing in Thailand right now and they faced the dilemma of deciding whether to take or leave their laptop and or iPads.  Their professional worlds revolve around the web to the point where it is an extension of themselves.

In his blog, Justin Thorp's Brain, he shares what they decided.  It's an interesting solution.

Justins brain

My personal blog--Daily Grit--is in the process of moving to WordPress.org

DailygritThis blog--Daily Grit--is almost nine years old and is a place where I have shared more than 2,500 posts about whatever was on my mind at that particular point.  From its beginning, this blog has been on the TypePad.com platform which was an early pioneer for those looking for a place to blog.

The time has come to change to a platform that can help take my repository of my thoughts to a higher level.  My son, Justin, is helping to change it to WordPress.org.  However, if you go to DailyGrit.com, you find that it has an unfinished look.  We are not done.

To get the latest, greatest in my life, go to westhorp.typepad.com and you will see the blog in its usual format.  

Because of the blog's length, we ran into some challenges.  We will work it out and then have a grand opening for the new look.  Until then, again go to westhorp.typepad.com.