Ten Things You Can’t Do With Online Newspapers


The newspaper industry is definitely in decline with more and more people foregoing delivery and getting their information online.  Even copyright lawsuits might not stave off layoffs.  In fact, the publisher of the New York Times stated that sometime in the future they’d stop printing the paper .

A world without newspapers?  Who would have imagined that? Admittedly, I get my news from online sources and haven’t subscribed to a newspaper for years, but it’s hard to imagine no longer to have the option of curling up with the Sunday paper in the near future.

A recent iPad commercial illustrated where the newfangled gadget is lacking compared to old-fashioned newsprint, but there are many other uses for newspapers that I’ll miss should they vanish.

Here are ten things you can do with newsprint that can’t be done with online news sites:

  1. Coupons – Many frugalistas subscribe to the Sunday paper (some will score multiple copies) specifically for the great grocery store coupons.  Certainly there are many online sources for coupons (such as Savings.com !), but none can duplicate the treasure hunt quality of digging into the sale inserts included with the newspaper.
  2. Bird cage/litter box liner – As the old saying goes, even the worst newspaper can be used for the bottom of a bird cage–or your litter box.  
  3. Protect breakables during moving/storage – Placed between plates as cushioning, wrapped around glasses and collectibles or stuffed inside things to help them maintain their shape, newspaper is a cheap, yet effective way to keep fragile items safe from breakage.
  4. Drop cloth for painting – Helps guard against paint spills and spatters and after you’re finished, you can just gather it up and throw it away.
  5. Tinder – Crumpled up sheets of newspaper work really well when starting a fire–whether it be in your fireplace, campfire or lighting a barbecue grill .
  6. Weed killer – Apparently newsprint can be used to fend off weeds .  Not possessing a green thumb, I had no idea.  Is there no end to newspaper’s usefulness?
  7. Protect project surfaces – Laid out on tables or counters while doing craft or cooking projects helps protect and makes clean up easier.
  8. Last minute gift wrap – Raise your hand if you’ve ever resorted to using the Sunday funny pages as impromptu wrapping paper?  Yup–me, too…
  9. Kites, paper airplanes and Pirate hats – What will kids do without newspaper to create a DiY aircraft or Long John Silver accessory? 
  10. Ransom notes – Just kidding…

Do you currently subscribe to a print newspaper? What uses have you found for it? Will you miss papers when they’re gone?

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  1. Sarahndipitea

    4 years ago

    11. Wash your windows. All you need is some warm water and newspapers and you can clean your windows without leaving streaks!

  2. ShoppinHolly

    4 years ago

    Kid newspaper activities: silly putty imprinting (does not seem fun but is) and paper mache pinata making–fun stuff. Also, have to agree with the other poster–seems newspaper ink would make windows dirty but it works like magic for spotless, streak-less windows!

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