Who keeps saying that newspapers are dead?

How long has it been since people started talking about the death of newspapers? I know its a hot topic these days as blogging goes mainstream, wireless internet is everywhere , and laptops are increasingly affordable, but that doesn't mean that people will stop reading newspapers. Or maybe they will, but I certainly don't look forward to replacing the Globe and Mail with my laptop during a leisurely breakfast. I like getting crumbs all over the paper, setting my coffee down on a section I've just read, letting the pages take up the entire table. If I spill some ketchup, the paper just soaks it up.

Plus there is the whole appeal of reading on the printed page rather than a computer screen. I recently heard Tod Maffin talk at an IABC breakfast in Toronto, and he said something about how people read less efficiently when light is projected at them (as in a computer screen) versus when light is reflected off what they are reading (as in a newspaper or book). I can't remember the exact reason (and if anyone wants to fill me in, it would be much appreciated) but I think it had something to do with the fight or flight response hardwired into our brains.

With my laptop, I feel like I'm working, like I've got a million things that I should be doing and I keep opening windows to get them done while engaging in online conversations. With the newspaper, I know that the only thing I've got to do is read the next section. If its the sports or real estate section, I can let it pass. When I'm finished reading, I don't feel like I've missed anything.

Anyone else feel the same way?

(note: I was going to link to the Globe and Mail website, but that would sort of defeat the purpose of this post, wouldn't it?)