Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Platform, Publication and Death

After last week's Zinefest in Golden Gate Park I took a moment to swing by The Great Overland Book Company where this sign (above) made me chuckle aloud... then a moment later I it reminded me of a blub I'd read somewhere a month or two ago, that FOXCONN had picked up the contract for Amazon's new tablet/e-reader thingy... hm. Well, why not? They already assemble and produce The Kindle, and if you've already got the right candidate for a job then you should just go ahead and keep 'em around full time. It just makes good business sense.

You know FOXCONN, right? Personally I'm on the brink of an obsession, largely due to the fact that it is so difficult to glean much concrete information on the company itself. They tend to shun reporters from what I've gathered thus far and it's not hard to imagine why. The location itself sounds like the setting for some bizarre sci-fi novel in translation, a walled compound more akin to a labor camp than a workplace, with a history of worker dispute, deadly accidents and on site suicide (fourteen in 2010). Did you know that prolonged exposure to mercury promotes psychosis, hallucination, delirium and suicidal tendency? What a grim realization to make while downloading a "jazzy" anthology of Garison Keillor curated poetry (selection!).

My love and excitement for the handcrafted publication stoked that day at Zinefest, but the important and foreboding message at the bookshop was an abstract reminder of exactly what the polar opposite can be, and the means behind its production. Funny because one of the zines I picked up, Cabeza by Aaron Kaneshiro featured a Mac's "loading" image incorporated into the background on one page. I'm told that synchronicity is everywhere. Still, how did we ever excessively complicate something so simple as reading a good book?

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