What an interesting experiment.
This morning, a four-page printed newspaper called The Manual was distributed to London commuters at a number of locations in the city.
Just 150 copies were printed with each one numbered so making the complete print run truly a limited edition.
One of the interesting aspects of this newspaper is that it was produced and printed entirely by hand:
[â€¦] Every word and every image and every mark of any kind in The Manual was drawn by a team of volunteers – mostly illustrators. The printing was also by hand, silk screened at The Print Club in Dalston.
And it has a notable objective:
[â€¦] This one-off non-profit project was organised by Shakeup Media to make a point about the future of print. We hope to show that handmade qualities can transform newspapers from â€˜junkâ€™ to collectable. We also want to demonstrate the power of print as a medium by using ink and paper in a manner that emphasises their unique touch, smell and texture.
Itâ€™s an admirable experiment. I wish I could have seen a copy, better to form a view on whether â€œhandmade qualities can transform newspapers from â€˜junkâ€™ to collectable.â€
The only jarring note is this statement on the newspaper’s website regarding photos:
The photographs here are all copyright of the award-winng [sic] Caroline Irby (www.carolineirby.com) and you are welcome to use them on the understanding that weâ€™ll ask you later for your normal reproduction fee.
Why not release them â€“ just these specific photos â€“ under a Creative Commons license? I could find only one photo on the site, and itâ€™s a good one, but still: think of the buzz possibilities that would be enriched by some great photos.
But thatâ€™s the mainstream media for you.
One other thought springs to my mind on what Addis is doing.
The part of EPIC that springs to my mind when thinking about The Manual concerns the â€œnews wars of 2010â€ and what ultimately happens to newspapers and specifically the New York Times (as the metaphor for the Fourth Estate) â€“ it â€œgoes offline and becomes a print-only newsletter for the elite and the elderly.â€
EPIC 2015 is up on YouTube and very much worth a look if you didnâ€™t see it when it came out. Worth a look, too, if you did see it at that time â€“ just see what has and hasnâ€™t happened in the intervening four years.