67 years ago Primo Levi was deported to Auschwitz. 64 years ago he published a book about that experience titled If this is a man. 24 years ago Primo Levi died. Today Primo Levi reminded me of the absurdity of certain laws and wastes of public money, and how the technology could help culture. Today I met a high school student who, having to read If this is a man to write a report, borrowed in the closest Public Library the copy that you see in these photos.
Last month Corriere della Sera, one of the major Italian newspapers, asked several novelists and other writers if and how the age of ebooks is changing fiction and the general approach to creation of literature. It was an interesting read, because it contained both pearls of wisdom and things that are either irrelevant or simply wrong, but all said by the same “gurus”.
- Personally, I believe that copyright has a reason to exist (1) and that copying and sharing online 24⁄7 every file you can lay your hands on, “just because I can”, makes it easier to pass things like ACTA and therefore is a stupid, counterproductive habit. This doesn’t mean that I like the current copyright system. I am convinced that copyright must be reformed and that, even before that, its duration must be heavily reduced.
In August 2010 Umberto Eco, a great Italian intellectual and novelist wrote something very true about traditional paper books: don’t you dare to hope to get rid of all paper books just because e-books are now available. Unfortunately, Eco gave a really dumb proof for his assertion: