The Online Versus Print Debate Continues

November 3, 2009 § Leave a comment

Kenyon Review editor David Lynn has a thoughtful post on the KROnline Blog about the debate between online and print.  What we like about David’s discussion is that he is honest about what worries many writers, especially those facing tenure or promotion in traditional English programs, but he also acknowledges that new technology and new media tend to win out in the end.

Having just finished a new short story, Lynn is considering whether he wants to send it to a more traditional paper-and-ink magazine — such as the one he edits and values so highly — or to an online journal:

Another possibility would be, as I’ve mentioned, to send the new story to any one of the dozens of electronic journals burgeoning on the Internet. But what would it mean for me to abandon print? Less status? Not least foregoing the tactile pleasure of holding the printed thing itself in my hand? How much is that worth?

I set out the questions this way to make the point that this is not merely a hypothetical: something precious to me as a writer is on the line. Because, of course, there’s the larger issue as well: what does the relationship between the print Kenyon Review and the electronic KROnline mean for the writing community? Should authors be as willing — more than merely willing, should they be as happy and enthusiastic — for their work to appear in our online journal as in print?

You can read the entirety of David Lynn’s post here.

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