In France, Vending Machines In Train Stations Are Giving Out Short Stories While People Wait

50 years ago, people read the newspapers and books while waiting on transportation. When smartphones gave people instant access to the internet, they replaced papers and books as a new media of entertainment. But now, 32 short story vending machines have begun to spread around France, delighting citizens and tourists alike.

The little machines have three buttons; one minute stories, three minute stories, and five minute stories, depending on the users preference. Once a story length has been selected, a strip of paper is printed out featuring one of 5,000 stories anonymously submitted and downloaded into the machines.10-12a16

Romance, horror, comedy, mystery, drama are included in the list, but they have made sure that everything is family-friendly and could be read by a 10-year-old. The best part? They are all FREE!

The publishing company responsible for the machines, Short Edition, is not surprised by their success.

Smartphones have blurred the limits between our professional life and our distractions. The paper format provides a break from omnipresent screens. People may not have reacted so strongly to our vending machines six years ago, when smartphones hadn’t become essential to all parts of our lives yet.” The company states.

In France, statistics prove that people are reading about 30% less than they used to, with the majority stating “lack of time” as their main reason. The idea has become so popular, more countries are requesting the machines and hope to see them in more public places where people might spend idle time by reading instead of standing around doing nothing.


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