Media Magazine

Saving Articles for a Later That May Not Come

Posted on the 26 April 2013 by Themarioblog @garciainteract

This is the weekend edition of TheMarioBlog and will be updated as needed. The next blog post is Monday, April 29

TAKEAWAY: How many of us read articles that we download and save for a later time? Instant seduction and instant consumption go hand in hand.  Read it later may be a wish, but not usually fulfilled. PLUS: Creativity Workshop with Deborah Withey in Wales this summer

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Forget the yellowing piles of newspapers and dog-eared magazines waiting to be read later; rarely does anyone pick them up. There are apps for saving unfinished articles, but how often do readers return to them?

This is an excerpt from a recent article in American Journalism Review and it made me think about the subject of downloaded and saved articles that we say we will get to—-one of these days.

Let’s face it: we are a society of ingrates when it comes to patience about all things, but particularly about waiting to read an article that we have saved “for later”.

Read It Later (a most appropriate name) has already tried to help us categorize what we may save for a later read. Now, the same company launches Pocket for Publishers, allows the Web sites of magazines and newspapers to track which articles and authors are not only being saved to Pocket, but how often and when the content is reopened and reread.

Wonder what it will yield.  If you are like me, I save pieces that I seldom get back to. Perhaps it is the way I file them into oblivion.  Or, more likely, there are too many new, exciting and enticing new pieces popping into the computer, and the ones that do the instant seduction win.

How does that happen? Usually, it is a good headline that does the trick, as it has been since the beginning of publishing.  Other times, it is the topic. The headline may be dull, but the topic holds promise of a good read. Often times, I will never find out, as I, too, fail to return to the land of the saved articles.

In my own experience, if the article saved is not returned to within a few hours, it’s not going to happen.

Saving for later reads were never too popular

I recall, many years ago, the Japanese makers of popular printers, engaged me in a conversation, and then a project, about the printing of articles that people found interesting in their computers. Of course, for a later read.

That project took me to Japan, and to the early stages of a project, but it was cancelled when the marketing department conducted studies that yielded one important conclusion: most people in the study at the time said that they rarely got to read anything they printed for later reading.

The image that comes to mind is that of Lucille Ball in her classic I Love Lucy episode when she and sidekick Ethel got a job in a chocolate factory.  Fresh bonbons moved too fast on the revolving cylinder for the redhead to keep up with them.

That’s exactly what happens on the assembly line of fresh stories. Too many.  Too fast. Immediate seduction beats the thoughts of delayed rewards.  The human condition at work.

For editors and designers the key is to put the emphasis on now, not later. The best do achieve it.

Lucy in the chocolate factory video

Deborah Withey creative workshop in Wales

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St. Davids, Wales: the beautiful landscape of the region where Deborah Withey’s Creativity Workshop will take place

Deborah Withey and creativity should be pronounced in the same breath. 

The first time I met Deb, at a Poynter Institute seminar, she mesmerized me with her illustration and design work.  We became instant friends, to this day. Deborah displayed her magic and talent in such newspapers as The Detroit Free Press, The Virginian Pilot, and assorted other projects.

Deborah, who lives in Wales now, writes me that one of her dreams is coming true. She is planning to run creative break workshops from her own studio in Wales.

The first Expanding Creativity workshop will be in July.  So, if you are in need of a break, want to get inspiration from the best, and, at the same time enjoy St. Davids, which, says Deb, “is is lovely, the beaches, the view, the medieval castles and the cathedral are all here for the taking, the food will be sensational and I believe the work and sharing, inspirational.“

According to Deb, her workshop will cover all storytelling from print to broadcast.  Deborah’s partner for this workshop will be

Grant Sonnex, designer and maker of fine furniture, and a former BBC Natural History Unit writer.

If interested, please write directly to Deborah Withey at:

Deborah’s website:

Of special interest this weekend:

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Boston Magazine’s Heart-Shaped Shoes: The Story Behind the Beautiful Cover

It is a beautiful and moving cover for the May cover and back cover of Boston Magazine, with an image made from shoes worn by the marathon’s runners.  A simple and creative approach to reflect on the tragedy that was the bombs at the Boston Marathon, while paying tribute to its victims.

TheMarioBlog post #1247

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