According to the New York Times, at least.
Social mores surrounding the act of reading alone in public may be changing along with increased popularity. Suddenly, the lone, unapproachable reader at the corner table seems less alone. Given that some e-readers can display books while connecting online, there’s a chance the erstwhile bookworm is already plugged into a conversation somewhere, said Paul Levinson, professor of communication and media studies at Fordham University.
“I think, historically, there has been a stigma attached to the bookworm, and that actually came from the not-untrue notion that, if you were reading, you weren’t socializing with other people,” Dr. Levinson said. “But the e-reader changes that also because e-readers are intrinsically connected to bigger systems.” For many, e-readers are today’s must-have accessory, eroding old notions of what being bookish might have meant. “Buying literature has become cool again,” he said…
For many, e-readers are today’s must-have accessory, eroding old notions of what being bookish might have mean.
They even have a picture of a fashion model holding an iPad, so it must be true! Reading is now sexy! This shitty excuse for journalism makes me want to swear out loud.
And “social stigmas” related to reading in public? WTF? Because, I mean, no one thinks reading in public is a good thing, and people never actively lie about their reading habits in order to be seen as better people.
Ah no – the article has the authoritative chops to then state:
Not everyone agrees that e-readers have made the people reading them more approachable. In fact, the opposite may be true in some cases.
So reading ebooks may or may not make you more lonely or more sociable, we just don’t know. All we can conclude, then, is that it must have been a very slow news day at the New York Times.