Reading Out Loud
The Goods funnies, by (L to R) Adam Rex, Carson Ellis and Kevin Cornell (via McSweeney’s).
I subscribe to the print version of the New York Times, so unfortunately there’s no chance my local paper will sign up for syndication. But I have also been thinking recently about what the disappearance of the physical newspaper means for my own children, and how I came to read it in the first place. The Sunday funnies are the on-ramp, the gateway drug of newspaper reading. But the important thing is that they are out there on the table, for the bored pancake-eater to pick up. When asked about the future of print for the final edition of the New City Reader, I couldn’t come up with any high-faultin’ theory, but wrote instead:
This is my emotional fear regarding newspapers:
If you don’t get a physical newspaper and have it spread all over the breakfast table, how do your children know you are supposed to read the newspaper? This is a real question. I remember being frustrated and bored by my parents’ newspaper habit (as well as their All Things Considered habit), but eventually, because it was there, and because they weren’t talking to me, I began to find parts of it that were interesting. If all my son sees is me staring at a screen, I can sometimes call it work and sometimes call it reading the newspaper, but that is not a distinction he can see or participate in. Same thing when you visit someone’s house and they are reading the Times on their iPad. Unless you put your own iPad in your bathrobe pocket, all you have is toast. Reading the newspaper is a performance, among other things, and as we compress everything into one device, which performance you are giving becomes unclear.
Read the rest here: Reading Out Loud: Observers Room: Design Observer
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