Free Newspapers Indeed

So then, fickle fame has floated away again. After almost 2 days of being WordPress blog post number one, my Star Wars article has been moved to the great spare room in the sky where it will age, gain weight and become bitter and twisted.

Still, 6000 hits in two days – not too bad. The downside of course is all the young idiot men who find their way to my blog and proceed, in very bad grammar, to diss me in the comments. “Hey asshole”, “fuck you” and so on. Brilliant. Keep it up lads – the world needs more morons. Who else is going to flip our burgers?

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And so onto today’s frivolity. The Stockholm underground has a (fairly) new message rolling on its information system. Under the times of the arriving trains you will now see the text:

“For everybody’s safety and enjoyment, please take your free newspaper with you when you leave the train.”

metro.jpgAlright, first of all it can’t very well be my newspapers if it was free, can it? And second of all – in what way does it constitute a threat to safety? Are they worried that somebody will get a rolled-up newspaper in the eye and sue them?

And third of all – why is it suddenly my job to clean up the trains? SL, Stockholm Local Transit, has a deal with the newspaper Metro to allow it to be distributed inside their buildings. And so what do they do? They pocket the money, get us all to read the vacuous slab of non-threatening “news” and then try and give us a bad conscience for leaving it behind.

Normally I am all in favour of everybody getting stuck in to keep the world clean. But in this case, I think we should all gladly scatter these free newspapers underfoot. Maybe a protest like this would force them to get rid of it completely, and reduce the mountains of paper wasted.

And if we make as large a mess as possible, then maybe SL will be forced to use some of the profits from the Metro deal to pay some extra cleaners. The tight scummy gits.

Well I’m off to France now. Expect to see my next entry in about a week.

/ paddy

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10 thoughts on “Free Newspapers Indeed

  1. I disagree. The moment you pick up a copy of that inane rag, it’s yours even if you didn’t pay for it, and it’s your responsibility to refrain from littering public space, including subway floors, with it. That’s what the great big green inane-rag return bins are for.

    On the Saltsjöbanan commuter train, one sometimes hears the message: “We’d appreciate if you bring your newspaper with you when leaving the train.” I would put it differently: “This train, while admittedly rather nasty and run down, is not a waste bin; act accordingly.”

    As for public safety, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that neater subways reduce suicide rates.

    Cheers!

  2. I always leave my paper on the bus, because people always get a hold of it and read it. Maybe then they don’t have to take a new one and litter with that instead. May be that I don’t live in Stockholm and use their transports so I have no idea how it works over there, but here people always read it if it’s within grasping distance.

  3. Congratulations on your instant fame! My husband got picked up by Scoble this week and enjoyed two days of thousands of hits but now things are back to normal. I had a brief blast in late December when Salon linked to me, but that was also short-lived. However, neither of us had 6000 hits in two days – that must have been kind of heady.

  4. To France? To the south or the north? If it’s the latter I sincerely hope that vous parlez Francais. I couldn’t the last time I visited and I got a less-than-warm welcome..

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