Soon our metalwork artists will have to change from this man reading a newspaper to someone reading a smartphone or texting on a park bench. Using mobiles has got so bad in Singapore authorities there have started broadcasting loudspeaker notices warning pedestrians to look up every few moments to see obstacles ahead or, if travelling on an escalator, to keep one hand firmly on the handrail while the other is scrolling or texting. This is to stop an increasing number of pedestrian accidents and injuries in busy malls and streets. Electronics and the web have taken their toll on the old fashioned newspaper. Hundreds of newspapers have recently shut down around the world; the US magazine Newsweek, founded in 1933, no longer prints a paper edition. It only publishes an online version.
Singapore says it is possible to have a webcam app on a smartphone that shows a moving landscape of the user’s surroundings, but scrollers can be too engrossed to pay attention to what is happening around them.