No More “E-Book” Panels, Please

From the London Review of Books comes yet another panel on the future of reading. I’ve been to a few similar discussions, and wondered if the outcome of this one would be any different. The New York Times book blog sums up:

“So the panel was in accord: We can’t predict how people will read. We can only hope that authors keep giving in to the impulse to write, and that readers find their way to quality writing, no matter the tool or the medium.”

Can I recommend a moratorium on panels “about the internet” until we can come up with something better than “we don’t know what it is, but it’s big” ? Every talk I’ve been to about the future of reading, e-books, blogging, publishing, etc, has concluded with this same thesis. We can’t predict the future, but it’ll be very different. Can’t you say this at literally any point in history? Never has so little been communicated so much.

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