People are not reading as much as they used to. Young adults turn to the Internet and YouTube for their news. Publishers are struggling to make money and are turning to ebooks and no-royalty books. Bookstores are closing. Some people feel writers should get a one-time payment for their books, then give up all rights and make them available for free. Illiteracy is high. Frankly, this is all Not-News. We know it already. We may not like it, but we, as a nation, are not doing a whole lot about it.
Then there’s News. Take a look at the article in AllAfrica.com called, “Nigeria: National Book Policy Ready Soon.”
Dr. Jerry Agada, Minister of State for Education, at a press briefing to commemorate the 2008 World Book and Copyright Day (who in the U.S. even knows there is such a day!) said
the draft policy will address key issues in the book publishing industry such as how to make standard books available to Nigerians, copyright and book piracy. The policy, according to the Minister will also serve as a guide to Nigerians and motivate the citizenry to imbibe the habit of reading books and maintain personal libraries in their private homes.
According to Agada,
the development of a National Book Policy was a proactive step by the Federal Government to have a nation that reads and a nation that thinks, since meaningful socio-economic development cannot be attained in an illiterate environment.
Now that’s news. Good News. We could use a bit more good book news in the U.S.