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Tribune Publisher Says Kids Are Going to Start Reading Newspapers Any Day Now

Once this Internet fad blows over.

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Big newspapers, like the New York Times and the Guardian, are spending lots of money to grow their mobile audience numbers, releasing fancy news apps and publishing stuff directly to social media.

Tribune Publishing CEO Jack Griffin, whose holdings include the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, says the move to mobile is short-sighted, and that millennials will eventually return to reading print newspapers.

In a recent interview with Crain’s, Griffin expands on his thinking:

“I use these all the time,” Griffin says, laying his hands on a smartphone and iPad. “But I use them to find stuff that I’m looking for, and I read the paper to find out things I don’t know.”

He said he expects young people, like his 20-something sons, will continue to gravitate to newspapers, even print editions. As they move into adulthood and begin to care more about settling into a community, they’ll turn to a newspaper, as generations of Americans before them have, he predicts.

In the last six months, Tribune Publishing’s stock has lost more than half its value. The company messily fired Los Angeles Times publisher Austin Beutner earlier this month and plans to cut jobs across the company in the near future.

You can read the full interview here.

Update: A spokesperson from Tribune Publishing reached out to give Re/code this statement:

“Jack was referring to newspapers broadly in all of their manifestations, from print to desktop to mobile, and the different experiences that each platform offers consumers. We continue to design and roll out next-generation digital products that ensure broad exposure for the award-winning journalism our brands produce.”

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