Skip to comments.Don't Burn Your Books—Print Is Here to Stay
Posted on 01/07/2013 11:56:03 AM PST by Borges
Lovers of ink and paper, take heart. Reports of the death of the printed book may be exaggerated.
Ever since Amazon introduced its popular Kindle e-reader five years ago, pundits have assumed that the future of book publishing is digital. Opinions about the speed of the shift from page to screen have varied. But the consensus has been that digitization, having had its way with music and photographs and maps, would in due course have its way with books as well. By 2015, one media maven predicted a few years back, traditional books would be gone.
Half a decade into the e-book revolution, though, the prognosis for traditional books is suddenly looking brighter. Hardcover books are displaying surprising resiliency. The growth in e-book sales is slowing markedly. And purchases of e-readers are actually shrinking, as consumers opt instead for multipurpose tablets. It may be that e-books, rather than replacing printed books, will ultimately serve a role more like that of audio booksa complement to traditional reading, not a substitute.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
And though I love reading things on FR, when it comes to books and mags, give me the real thing.
But I love my hard copies better.
I do a lot of cross-referencing back into a book I currently read...not so much for novels but for non-fiction. I will never find this convenient with an e-reader.
However, I DO LOVE my e-reader for light reading, travel, and to have in my bag whenever I have a few minutes on a park bench to fill.
The present argument is that the buyer is only getting a license and that is not transferable to the estate. Ditto for if you store your photo's in some “cloud” server.
Like all the adverts for gold - nothing beats tangible assets.
I know I read differently on the computer than I do when I read a book.
My bottom shelf basic kindle is a great alternative.
I like being able to download books for free. I also like having a solution to the eternal problem of adequate lighting. However, I get sick of staring at screens all the time.
Also, why would you burn existing books? That’s just a stupid headline.
The reason books are better than e-books is because of bookstores. Here’s an experiment any reader can do: when you’re having a bad day go to a bookstore, on another bad day click on Amazon. There’s nothing like the feeling of walking into a bookstore, except maybe walking into a liquor store, just going in feels good. Amazon and other sources of e-books might be more convenient and cheaper, but they’ll never give you that high. I work across the street from a Barnes & Noble, it’s my primary work day stress relief.
Does anyone have a best recommendation for a basic cheap e-reader for borrowing library books?
My experience is that e-books work best for books you intend to read straight through from beginning to end, like a novel. Reference books and non-ficton books you know you will be referring to from time to time in the future don’t work so well and are better purchased as a traditional book.
One other reason may have to do with an issue that is rearing it’s legal head lately : who owns the media (iTunes/music, photographs, voice mail, eBooks etc) purchased on-line when the purchaser dies?
That is SO true. I have movies on Amazon Instant Video that I purchased and do wonder who will have these movies when not only I do but my wife as well. Will my children fight over them? Will my account be voided? Do I have to put this in the will? I know this seems simple at this point, but as electronic video libraries become more than a small amount of movies, books, music and suddenly becomes “money”...what happens????
I've read studies that indicate folks of my generation and older who were raised with books (personal desktops were just starting to come into widespread use during my college years), retain far more information when read off a printed page than we do reading of a monitor screen. That trend seems to be inverting itself with younger generations, as one might expect.
Why not just leave the password and access info to the relevant next of kin?
From my cold, dead ink smudged hands.
Print books cannot be deleted off my machine or updated to a more PC edition regardless of what I want. I can by a politically incorrect print edition and give it away anonymously - files are tracked.
Ray Bradbury poses the scenereo; All books are banned and the threat of losing knowledge becomes real.
People adept at memorizing, memorize passages or all of the classics and live in the forest, reciting what they know/remember.
Fast foeward to now ... and we are made aware of the re-writing of history and if no one remembers or keeps a copy or record of the original, in time we lose the past, no longer able to refence the past, ...
too horrible to imaging.
if you had to memorize a book, which would it be? i like to ask this question on Facebook every year on the anniversary of Ray Bradbury’s birthday...
i agree! no reason to burn existing books just because the trend is electronic... btw--i love my Nook, but i also love my hardcovers and even paperbacks...
With no hesitation, KJV of the Bible.
Something by Roger Zelazny. I’m tempted to go for Nine Prices of Amber, but then I need people to memorize the rest of the series. Probably everybody wants to memorize Lord of Light. So I’d probably go for Damnation Alley, might be considered a lesser work, but I’ve always been fond of it.
I often utilize Low-Power Persistent Papyrus High-Resolution Display versions of books, and also often use an e-reader.
No battery is required.
No software that continually updates automatically, or has a big blinkie reminding you of such, with cost.
You can always put a REAL bookmark in a place, close the cover, and come back later, open the cover, and not wait for the reader to initialize.
If you drop it, it is never broken.
You may still acquire an author of choice’s autograph, and not one that has been programmed into the interface.
There are NO advertisements to interrupt your reading pleasure.
You cannot dog-ear an electronic page, no matter how you try!
A crumb of food, or drop of drink, might well end your electronic reading pleasure, but not print, it just gains character.
You cannot actually ‘highlight’ pages in an electronic book, as you may in print.
You can ALWAYS find a buyer for a print book, whereas electronic viewing material is never YOUR’S to sell!
Printed books can become heirlooms.
“Whats wi’d d’is guy an’ his books???”
Let’s just say that, I have enough to keep me going, for instance:
1. All the ‘Dirty harry’ adventures in paperback.
2. The continually growing collection of one Ms. Kim Harrison’s ‘Hollows’ adventures, in both hardback and paperback.
3. Most of Robert E. Howard’s works.
4. All of Ian Fleming’s works, and a few of the wanna-be’s, as well.
5. Works of Zane Grey.
6. Works of Rex Stout.
7. Works of Robert B. Parker.
8. The few works in print concerning a certain short-stutured Los Angeles Homicide lieutenant, with a very old car.
I have my “have read” and “yet to read” bookshelves, don’t worry!
first for me would be Les Miserables... however, my son knows it inside out, so that frees me to memorize another favorite book or two—Paul’s Letter to the Philippians (NIV) and The Odyssey—in the original Greek, if i could...
The higher profits from the digital books have made print books more feasible economically. Production costs were killing them before the e-book came along.
I’ve never even touched an e-book device. Let them continue to subsidize my hardcovers and stay away from me.
then i would tackle the Psalms in Hebrew... and the Aeneid in Latin—that would probably be the easiest after Philippians...
Why? Because my reading habit is so engrained into me that I cannot now store ALL of the books I read. (I still have just about every hard copy book I've ever owned and I've run out of room.) That is why I love me Kindle Fire (But I think I would have been happier with just a plain Kindle the fire is just a little uncomfortable to hold with just one hand)
So now I go crazy with eBooks BUT when I run across a book I really Like I would love to have a nice leather bound copy with archival quality paper and gilt edging and a sewn in silk book mark and would be willing to pay premium for such. But I refuse to pay the ridiculous prices for a new standard Hardback being they are so poorly manufactured now. I wait till I can find them in the bargain bins or remaindered tables. And I hate paperbacks especially TRADE paperbacks which are just an excuse to get more money for a paperback copy.
I don't know. I have yet to run into a stinky, liberal hippy when I click 'check out' at Amazon.
You apparently don’t get the “ooooooh books I can buy” high. Hippies can’t touch it.
I haven’t read a “real book” since I got my Kindle Keyboard last year.
And in my area (southern Calif.) bookstores are going out of business in droves.
They’ve certainly made the competition stiffer. But I just don’t want an e-book, they have no draw to me. So much of what makes books awesome to me is other than the content. I love to see, smell them, be in a room filled with them. No e-book can do that. If you’re all about the content I suppose e-books are the path, but there’s ritual to books for me.
I love e-books for traveling and being on the go especially. So much easier than carrying a ton of reading material with me everywhere. I tend to use my Bible on the Kindle a lot too. I still love my actual books though. There’s a lot of books I still buy and keep on my bookshelf. Amazon has a ton of free books/apps and often for the “fluff” reads I tend to just do the e-book thing.
How things will look when we are all gone is another matter, that's harder to speculate about.
If civilization lasts, CD's will be long gone, replaced by something else -- if they haven't already been.
Books will still be around, but as quaint and old-timey relics.
Maybe like sheet music or player piano rolls -- still around but not selling in anything like the numbers it did earlier.
Westlaw (which I use everyday) is sophisticated boolean search software and has capabilities way, way beyond anything kindle, nook or the like has. Further, finding margin notes or going back and forth between pages to find a passage you remember is much more tedious in the typical e-reader than with paper and cardboard. But, to each his own. Use whatever works for you.
“Print is here to stay,” unless we want all publicly available knowledge to disappear in a disaster (e.g., EMP strikes).
ereaders give me a headache, print books don’t.