The majority of adult Americans (56%) didn't buy a book last year. How could this be? While on vacation I read the hard copy of the NYTimes and came across things I wouldn't have otherwise. Clark Hoyt, The NYTime's public editor, noted April 6 that the average Times reader spends 48 minutes with the daily newspaper and 72 minutes with the Sunday paper, far more time than the readers of most other newspapers. The online time is much less.
WashingtonPost won 6 Pulitzer Prizes, the largest number in the paper's history. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscsar Wao by Junot Diaz won the Pulitzer for Fiction. I finished it last month and would recommend it.
Bob Dylan won a special citation Pulitzer for his "profound impact on popular music and American culture, marked by lyrical compositions of extraordinary poetic power."
What does Dylan listen to on his radio? 50% of the songs he has played were recorded before 1960 and only 9% were recorded in the 80s or more recently. Random Dylan quote: “Sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me…as opposed to when you grow up and you learn that…the pen is mightier than the sword. The world is fill of little contradictions like that.” Once I wondered what happened to poetry in my lifetime, as it had been for previous generations, then I thought: Dylan.
Eric Alterman's Out of Print- The death and life of the American newspaper on the news business is one of the best articles I've come across, in a recent New Yorker. He takes the newsbusiness from the origins 300 years ago to a prescient review of the present. Excellent article for those interested in the media shift from print news to online.
The HuffingtonPost has passed the Drudge Report in the latest comscore and Neielsen ratings which I think has something to do with the energized Democratic base. The Gawker blog tops the list of the 25 most valuable blogs, at $150 million according to 24/7 Wall Street .
The 2008 State of the News Media, is out and notes that there is no finished news product anymore. News is continual, a service. One year ago 3/24 major traditional news websites offered links to outside content. Now that figure is up to 11. The news can't be offered in a "walled garden" anymore as readers don't just go to one place for daily news.
For Green Reading there are two books I'd be interested in from the list The Eco-Man's Library, Non-Fiction -- Vanity Fair's Green Guide: Desert Solitaire (1971) by Edward Abbey; and Wilderness and the American Mind (1967) by Roderick Nash. I've already read, as most of us have, Rachel Carson's Silent Spring but there are others on that list worth a perusal.
So a final quote from Edward Abbey: "Wildness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. A civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.”