Why Kenyan media should stop printing newspapers until Coronavirus is contained
Published on March 18, 2020
Do you buy a copy of the daily newspapers or do you prefer to pay either sh10 or sh20 bob to the vendors and scan through? I am here for you.
Well, with the menace of Coronavirus biting deeper in the country, the government as well as citizens are taking various steps to ensure that the spread of the virus is stopped.
Key issue is hygiene among all and especially by keeping hands clean.
If you prefer to scan a newspaper at your vendor’s station of business, you are putting yourself at risk of getting the virus because the copy you get has probably been read by at least ten others before you.
People also have the habit of peeping in and while at it there is a risk of some for of contact, which is one of the ways the virus is spread.
Newsprint is basically a thin, low cost, low quality, and usually recycled paper with fiber-based granules that would easily come off during normal contact with your skin (fingers).
Try to turn the pages of a newspaper at the corners or edges using your forefinger and thumb, and then rub your fingers together. You would notice some kind of particles are left.
These are the natural residues that are left on newsprint after it was processed at the paper mill. Most newsprint have gone through a process of de-inking recycled paper or paper-fibers to remove old inks used on them.
Newsprint is somehow flimsy and lightweight, but not as delicately fine as toilet paper or tissue paper. Due to the low quality of newsprint, it is not meant to be archived or stored for a long period of time because it will corrode or wear away over time even without handling it.
Media houses should also reconsider calling off the printing of hard copies until a time when the coronavirus is contained given the risk of spread.
The country has already taken measures to tackle the virus, including the closure of all the schools and universities and a ban on praying at churches and mosques so this should not be much of a sacrifice for media houses, especially because we are slowly migrating to digital media.