The incarcerated in America have limited Internet access, so one might imagine that it's still possible to produce a profitable print publication when your target readership resides in jails and prisons. But like the print industry in general, publications focused on prison policy have struggled. Their advertising and subscription numbers are declining even as the prison population -- and by extension, the number of people with family members in prison -- increases.
"Look at the number of prison magazines there were in the 1970s, when the prison population was like an eighth of what it is today," Wright says. The educational level of the average inmate is also a factor. "You're targeting a population that, depending on the state, is 60 to 80 percent functionally illiterate," Wright shrugs. "On its face, this isn't a good demographic for a magazine."
Adam Serwer explores Books Behind Bars in The American Prospect this week.
Cargo ships regularly lose these containers overboard — they write them off and collect insurance. But now marine biologists have found one off the coast of California and have decided to study how it may affect sea life. Already, they've discovered that the container has become a new type of habitat on the muddy ocean floor, attracting its own suite of creatures.
In the past, most unexploded armaments could be successfully defused and taken to disposal facilities. But as the munitions age and the fuses grow more brittle, the risk of uncontrolled detonations has increased. Last June, a bomb-disposal team in the central German town of Göttingen attempted to cut through the acid fuse of a 1,100-pound bomb discovered during the construction of a sports arena. The bomb exploded, killing three members of the disposal team and critically injuring six more.Read the full story here.