If you follow me on Twitter, you may have fallen witness to my daily long-read recommendations. It’s a reading obsession that started as a noncommittal New Year’s Resolution, in the hope that I’ll end up more informed about the world outside of my own bubbled-up media-centric existence. This pursuit for well-informed information has taken subjects like sports and technology – which I have previously found indelibly tedious – and turned them into something alluring. But why? I still don’t really care about the SuperBowl fixtures, nor the new products presented at Las Vegas’ annual Consumer Electronics Show, but – presented in this newish way – I can’t help but be compelled to read on.
I think that my fascination has something to do with the culture of reading. Engulfed in the digital age, I’m sick of information being so rapidly outmoded. We just move too fast. Liveblogging and 140 characters (or less) knowledge sharing can be exciting, but what about well sourced, loquacious, slow journalism? Thankfully, long reads have come along and reignited my passion for reading and the online world altogether. While cyberanthropologists attempt to theorise the trend, I’m just happy to subscribe to the new vogue.
With several ambitious plans coming up for this here website, I hope that The Frame Loop will soon be showered with long-form pieces. Until that time, here are some of my favourites from the last few weeks of internet trailing. The descriptions may not initially tickle your fondant fancies or personal interests, but I encourage you to stick with them; they’re all really rather brilliant.
1) Joy in the Task – a look at the demise of artisan coffee from Aeon Magazine.
2) The Force: How Much Military is Enough? – The New Yorker’s Jill Lepore pulls apart the cost of the US army.
3) When Science Meets Fiction – a self-explanatory piece from Jennifer Ouellette at Scientific American
4) Romancing the Throne – Jadaliyya’s skeptical look at American news coverage over last week’s Jordanian election
5) The Great NHS Robbery – Marcus Chown’s bleak perspective on the UK’s accosted public healthcare.