Views #1023 | Intermediate (B1)

Online Reading

Monica and Todd discuss how the internet is changing the way people read.

Todd: So Monica, this week we’re going to talk about technology and how maybe technology changes patterns of how we read and how we write, so let’s talk about reading. Do you think you read fewer books now because of the Internet?

Monica: I don’t think I read fewer books now because of the Internet.

Todd: So you still read quite a bit?

Monica: Yeah, recently I’ve been reading quite a bit, but I think it’s more to do with how much spare time I have.

Todd: So you don’t think that the internet eats into reading time at all? At least for you?

Monica: I would have to say no because I use the internet for slightly different reasons. I use the internet to check my e-mail and communicate with my friends, but reading a book is something completely different that I do for relaxation. So yeah, I don’t think it has impacted the amount that I read.

Todd: Yeah, you see, for me I think it’s the exact opposite, it’s pretty bad. I pretty much read everything online, magazines or newspapers, and occasionally I’ll still buy a newspaper but I’ve completely stopped reading books. I just do not read books anymore and I think I’m not alone...I’ve read online, ironically, of other people who say that they’ve stopped reading books because you’re so used to reading online now that the actual process of sitting down and reading a book just isn’t as enjoyable as it used to be.

Monica: Well, having said that it doesn’t affect how much I read, I have to say that I have stopped reading newspapers in hard copy form. I tend to check the news items on the websites so, yeah, in that regard, I do read less than I used to.

Todd: So you buy newspapers quite rarely?

Monica: Yeah, exactly. I’m also concerned about the environment so I sort of feel that if I can get the news from the Internet then it’s saving all the trees being cut down and printed into a newspaper form.

Todd: Yeah, that’s a good way to look at it.

Learn Vocabulary from the Lesson

eat into

The internet eats into reading time.

Here the phrase eats into‚ refers to taking time away from something. So if you do one thing, and because of it you do something less, then it eats into the things you do less. Notice the following:

  1. I try not to watch TV too much because it eats into my study time.
  2. I find social web sites eat into quality time I could spend with my family.

the exact opposite

For me it's the exact opposite, I prefer the internet to books.

When something is the exact opposite of something that means it is completely different and the counter part to something. For example, people who love getting up early are the exact opposite of people who love staying up late. Notice the following:

  1. Playing defense in basketball is the exact opposite of playing offense.
  2. Teaching is the exact opposite of studying.

I am not alone

I do not read books anymore and I think I’'m not alone.

Here the phrase "I am not alone" means that there are other people who think like the speaker does, or has the same feelings about something. Here are a few examples:

  1. I hate our new boss and I am not alone on that feeling.
  2. Many people agree with you about the new proposal. You are not alone.

having said that

The internet has not affected my reading habits. Having said that, I no longer buy newspapers.

The phrase "having said that" let's the listener know that speaker does not agree totally with what he or she said earlier. You use the phrase ‘"having said that"’ to show that what you will say next does not totally agree with what you said earlier.

  1. I do not like to play tennis. Having said that, I do think it is an exciting game.
  2. I do not think he is a good teacher. Having said that, I do think he knows his subject well.

That's a good way to look at it

We use the phrase "that's a good way to look at it" when we feel the speaker has a good attitude about a bad situation. Here are some examples:

Conversation 1:
A: I hate the traffic in the morning, but it allows me some      quite time to be alone.
B: That's a good way to look at it.
Conversation 2:
A: My English teachers speaks really fast, but it’s a good      chance to improve my listening.
B: That's a good way to look at it.

Vocabulary Quiz

opposite • eats into • having said that
good way • not alone
  1. Now, I am on a diet, please forgve me for eating this cake.
  2. You are in your thinking. Many people agree with you.
  3. You think cleaning is fun. That's a to look at it.
  4. Lately, my homework my time with friends.
  5. He is the complete of me but we are best friends.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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