Pocket’s 10 Most-Saved Stories in August

It might not come as a surprise, but the coronavirus pandemic was top of mind for Pocket users in August. Six of the top 10 most-saved stories for the month were about the virus, with science journalist Ed Yong’s coronavirus coverage for The Atlantic claiming the top two spots. Pocket readers were also interested in COVID-19’s far-reaching impact and historical parallels, including a New York Times deep dive into the pandemic’s effect on high fashion and an exploration of the 1918 culture war over face masks.

Interestingly, articles about the upcoming U.S. election did not crack the top 10. But the top non-COVID story saved by Pocket readers was a Harvard Business Review piece about how to change people’s minds. Maybe it’s a reflection of these highly partisan times?

How the Pandemic Defeated America

Ed Yong • The Atlantic

A virus has brought the world’s most powerful country to its knees.

Immunology Is Where Intuition Goes to Die

Ed Yong • The Atlantic

Which is too bad because we really need to understand how the immune system reacts to the coronavirus.

The Unraveling of America

Wade Davis • Rolling Stone

Anthropologist Wade Davis on how COVID-19 signals the end of the American era.

Sweatpants Forever

Irina Aleksander • The New York Times

Even before the pandemic, the whole fashion industry had started to unravel. What happens now that no one has a reason to dress up?

How to (Actually) Change Someone’s Mind

Laura Huang and Ryan Yu • Harvard Business Review

How do you go about convincing someone who, for one reason or another, doesn’t see eye-to-eye with you? Someone who gives you a flat out “no”?

Bill Gates on COVID: Most US Tests Are ‘Completely Garbage’

Steven Levy • Wired

The techie-turned-philanthropist on vaccines, Trump, and why social media is “a poisoned chalice.”

‘Success Addicts’ Choose Being Special Over Being Happy

Arthur C. Brooks • The Atlantic

The pursuit of achievement distracts from the deeply ordinary activities and relationships that make life meaningful.

The Mask Slackers of 1918

Christine Hauser • The New York Times

As the influenza pandemic swept across the United States in 1918 and 1919, masks took a role in political and cultural wars.

This Scientist Believes Aging Is Optional

Graham Averill • Outside

In his book, “Lifespan,” celebrated scientist David Sinclair lays out exactly why we age—and why he thinks we don’t have to.

Blockchain, The Amazing Solution for Almost Nothing

Jesse Frederik • The Correspondent

Blockchain technology is going to change everything: the shipping industry, the financial system, government … in fact, what won’t it change? But enthusiasm for it mainly stems from a lack of knowledge and understanding. The blockchain is a solution in search of a problem.

Get fascinating articles like these directly in your inbox.

Join millions and sign up for Pocket’s daily newsletter.