When students at Penn State decided this summer to start a magazine called Impact, they planned to have both an online and offline presence—that is, a print magazine. “We feel print is really important,” stated co-founder and co-editor Frances Starn. Speaking on the magazine’s Kickstarter video she said “We feel that having people be able to hold the magazine in their hand and see something will help us reach the widest audience possible.”
What? These are college students, the people raised on the Internet, wirelessly connected 24/7. Wouldn’t they prefer to consume content on one of their several devices? Not so, according to a poll released this summer by the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project. The poll found that 75 percent of young adults aged 16-29 years of age said they have read at least one book in print in the past year, compared with 65 percent of adults 30 and older.
“Younger Americans’ reading habits and library use are still anchored by the printed page,” said Kathryn Zickuhr, a research analyst at Pew Research. Americans under 30 are just as likely as older adults to visit the library and borrow print books, she said.
Sure, they love their technology, but there’s something about the look and feel of the printed page which they find attractive.