The Written Word
“No one reads anymore,” say older people the world over. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Hong Kong, a city so hyperactive that we need to bed fed bright noises and loud colors 24/7. The city’s bookshops are dying out, with Singaporean brand Page One cutting its Hong Kong operation to just two stores and Dymocks, formerly a household name, almost gone. Yet there are some out there who clearly recognize the power of the written word: Hong Kong booksellers are carted off north of the border for selling the “wrong kinds” of books; advertisers are pulling support from papers that voice dissenting opinions; and the city’s ranking on the Press Freedom Index has dropped from 18th in 2002 to 69th this year. The written word is looking pretty damned endangered to us.