5 thoughts on “Good reads III

  1. Dennis Lang says:

    Love the lists of great journalism. Leading of course to the question that’s come up here frequently with the erosion of the publishing industry. Will digitization alter our appetite for this type of in-depth, long-form content as future generations become conditioned to the immediacy of the internet; and with less demand and readership does it follow thar fewer and fewer journalists will be trained and inclined to write it?

    1. Ah, yes, the pessimist’s refrain… 🙂

      I say “no.” The best evidence I can cite is the undeniable value of that which you believe we’re at risk of losing. If skilled journalists and meaningful journalism are so crucial, how can they vanish?

      1. Dennis Lang says:

        Well, the thing is the way we’re digesting information is changing isn’t it? Will future generations need McPhee, Mailer, Didion, as our attention spans become reduced and all we require of a subject is a compelling headline, bullet points, and a little glib context wrapping it all up. In the future the kind of reporting represented by these writers may simply become less meaningful and “valuable” to us. It’s the audience that will change. I think I heard that ninety-five percent of young boys play video games fourteen hours a week–an experience entirely visceral and non-intellectual. These are the consumers of the future for journalism, and the reason I imagine journalism departments are perforce focussing on mixed media rather than cultivating the next John Hersey.

      2. That those who have short attention spans and little hunger for substance now have more micro-media and mindless entertainment to keep them occupied doesn’t mean those of us who desire, who need detail and substance are dying off.

        The pendulum might swing too far in a direction we don’t like, but it’ll swing right back the other way. Balance. Yin and yang. Etc.

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