You Cannot Read This Website Until You Turn Off the Internet

The Disconnect , a new magazine with stories, articles and poems, is only available online. But you can’t read it while you’re online. The internet log is hidden behind the warning until you disconnect your phone or computer from the internet. (The entire magazine loads as soon as you visit one page.) “This is not a Luddite rallying cry against modernity,” says editor Chris Bolin. This is an “ongoing experiment.”

The first issue of Disconnect, entitled Escape , is small, only thirteen articles ranging from one to thirteen pages each: five short stories, five poems, and three “commentary” essays, including Alex Beatty’s compelling title essay on “the next digital divide.” This division separates those who can disconnect from those who cannot:

There are parents, children, or employees who will feel obligated to be connected and hesitant to risk long periods of disconnection. Like cops in rhythm, they have to anticipate the needs of others, so there won’t be many opportunities such as trips to remote areas, digital detoxification, or even putting your phone on airplane mode.

If your job uses Slack or just constant email correspondence, you know this feeling of affection. And it can make it difficult to be offline long enough to read Disconnect. You can “cheat” by pulling it out on a second device. But finding a way to read Disconnect while still online is confirming Beatty’s point.

Escape: A New Digital Divide | Disconnection


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