Konbini has a brief report on Grenoble, the capital of the French Alps, introducing a number of free story vending machines from publisher Short Edition. The idea is to attract people’s attention away from their smartphones and onto reading on good old paper. Printed out on what seems to be effectively receipt paper, these stories are available for reading in different lengths to fill however much time a reader has available. There are eight of these machines altogether, located in various public areas around the city.
The article refers to Grenoble green party mayor Eric Piolle as “eco-friendly” for this initiative, though I don’t know how eco-friendly I’d call it. Unlike bound books, these printed-out stories are just going to be read and thrown away, after all. And even though they will biodegrade, they still use up trees that take a long time to grow back. What could be more eco-friendly than a story you can download as pure electrons instead?