How long can print newspapers last?

From the available data, we know with a reasonable degree of certainty that half of the newspaper readers today are 50 years of age or older, even though this age group represents only 30% of the total population. We can conclude from the demographic distribution of the newspaper audience that individuals under the age of 50 are far less likely to read newspapers than their elders. And we know everyone eventually will die, with the oldest readers statistically likely to expire sooner than the younger ones.

Alan Mutter mashes together Census data, Pew studies, life-expectancy numbers and some charts to show us with statistics what we already knew in our hearts: The number of people who turn to printed newspapers as their primary source of news will shrink rapidly in the next 20 years.

Cross-posted from my Posterous site at Becker’s Online Journal