Sunday, January 14, 2007

Cable, Computer, and Carrier

In this post, I reminisced about the 1980 Star Tribune newspaper strike and asked if the workers would dare strike in this day and age. Online archives of Minnesota news do not go back as far as 1980, except for the Minnesota Daily archives. Disagreements with the campus newspaper that I was forced to pay for aside, this proves to be a good tool to read about local stories.

In an editorial from September 22, 1980, I found this little gem describing one bone of contention during the strike.

Electronic distribution of some or all of the newspapers is said to be the wave of the future and one might admire the Star and Tribune Co.'s determination to be on the cutting edge of such change. Newspaper distribution has long been mired in 18th-century technology. (What mind would have conceived of a computer-assisted information medium distributed door-to-door by 12-year-olds riding bicycles?) Although sending news into the home via a cable or computer is a generation or two away, the company envisions projects such as electronic libraries and computer subscription services to institutions and other newspapers.

Timing is off, but very prescient of the student newspaper, the striking workers, and the Star and Tribune Company, don't you think?

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