Based in Glasgow, Scotland, The Drum covers news of printing, advertising, design, media, and marketing throughout the UK. A recent article, “Paper and Print,” assesses the situation facing print service providers in that part of the English-speaking world. Although there’s an ocean between the audiences, many of the comments could have been taken straight from printing trade journals in the US. Michael Johnson, president of the British Printing Industries Federation (BPIF), is quoted as saying that the industry is “at a crossroads of win or lose” and that print is on the brink of changing “more in the next 10 years than in the last 100.” Other sources make equally pointed observations about surviving the change or succumbing to it. Re: investing in technology: “Contributing to some print companies' demise has been the need to invest heavily in digital without realising that the lifespan of this type of equipment tends to be dramatically shorter than with traditional equipment, with high service contracts and frequent upgrades required. The payback needs to match this.” Re: overcapacity and lack of differentiation: "Everyone has similar machinery and is offering and competing for the same products. Many printers have failed to diversify and continue to compete in and stick to the same old markets." Re: pricing: "The vast majority of printers sell simply on price, and have no real marketing policy. These are the firms that go under when things get tight." Re: why print firms fail: “Trends among those companies which have closed include bad investments, unsustainable prices, no debt insurance, bad debts and quite frankly offering services that don't live up to clients' high expectations." There’s much more, including an account of what has happened to the UK paper industry since the days when Britain was the fourth largest producer of paper in the world. The full text of the article can be read here, with free online registration.