Ahmed Adel remains steadfast in selling daily papers

A newspaper vendor preserves tradition in Hillah amid changing reading habits

HILLAH, November 21 — The need to pick-up a daily newspaper has all but disappeared across the world, but on a street in the heart of Hillah, Ahmed Adel continues to sell his dailies to passersby.

According to Adel, close too 100 customers stop by his stretch of sidewalk to buy newspapers. He says they value the “tactile experience” of readung a printer newspaper. Some even wait for him each morning, ensuring he has a daily income.

Adel sets up his newspapers each morning, lining them up neatly along the sidewalk near a string of private medical clinics in downtown Hillah. He gets deliveries everyday from Baghdad, providing customers with the latest publications, fresh from the capital.

He shared that while business has declined, a few popular newspapers ensure that business continues.

The sale of newspapers has declined significantly, and most readers have disappeared. I used to rely on retirees from the 1950s and 1960s generation, but this generation has become homebound in front of the television. Mobile phone technologies have caused people to shy away from reading newspapers, as everything published in the newspaper is available on electronic websites and can be browsed on mobile phones. Sales of the Al-Dustour and Al-Sabah newspapers reach 50 copies daily, while the Al-Mada and Al-Ittihad Al-Sha’bi newspapers are the most sought-after, with sales reaching 75 copies each.