Fiction is my favorite genre, if I can call it that. It quenches my thirst for the unknown and adventure not bounded by the limits of reality as we know it. And it usually involves so many emotions and feelings in the process. I can understand the importance of more grounded work but I was always an intuition and feel kind of person.
Incidentally, I was listening to Mass Effect's soundtrack when I wrote this.
That sounds like a case of America's and specifically American business' cult-like obsession with "useful" outcomes. Basically, if it doesn't obviously produce anything profitable immediately then it's useless to them. I wouldn't pay too much attention to them. Four of the five top-selling genres are sub-genres of fiction, those people are just a small minority raging against something because it makes them feel big. The only effect they have on reading writ large is if they try to, say, strip literature programs from public schools, and they can be smacked down on that count at the ballot box.
This is nothing new and is really of no consequence. Some businessmen reading nothing but non-fiction business related books is like a cat enthusiast reading nothing but cat books or a photography hobbyist reading nothing but photography and art related books. And it certainly doesn't reflect the overall public's reception to fiction; the majority of the most revered stuff (not just literature, but stuff like film as well) is fiction.
I could be wrong, but it looks to me that if fiction gets snubbed, it isn't really getting snubbed by anyone other than small pocket groups who aren't really relevant.
Yeah my parents read non-fiction and while my mom is happy as long as I am reading something, I tell my dad what I am reading and he looks borderline ashamed.
He is a big history nerd and reads all these great non-fiction books, which is cool, but god damn homey chill and let me read what I like haha. Life is not about amassing things--be it wealth, knowledge, power, and so forth--it's about being happy with simple things. I should know, I read that nonsense in a non-fiction self-help book written by a millionaire.