It appears there is a place on earth where people cannot get enough of reading newspapers. It is called Ireland.

Look at this quote from today's Irish Times "The survey, conducted by Millward Brown Lansdowne, showed that, overall, the number of people regularly reading a newspaper in the Republic increased during 2009 by 3,000, to 3.529 million."

Yes, increased. While the rest of the world is losing ground daily to the internet those pesky Irish are reading more newspapers than ever. Good for them!

Yes, newspapers, those old-fashioned paper things that leave ink stains on your hand, the technology created by Guthenberg in the 15th century with the first printing press.

Latest figures from Ireland are stunning, as if the Internet was never invented. The JNMR survey shows the Irish Times at its highest readership ever, with 369,000 average daily readership.

The Sunday Independent has passed the one million mark in readership while the other major daily The Irish Independent recorded an average daily readership of 581,000, an increase of 61,000 over the 2008 figure.

The Irish Examiner recorded an average daily readership of 208,000, an increase of 6,000 on the 2008 figure according to the survey.

What gives? I have no idea to be honest, but it wonderful and heartening to see.