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Thursday, 16 January 2014

Print is mightier than the electron

Well, maybe for a little while longer, anyway.

Ricoh Americas Corporation researchers interviewed over 800 readers and discovered that, regardless of media hype regarding electronic publishing, ‘Nearly 70% of consumers feel it is unlikely that they will give up on printed books by 2016.’  Why they chose 2016 is anybody’s guess. Anyway, the majority of those questioned claimed to have an ‘emotional, visceral and sensory attachment to printed books. Despite their perceived popularity, 60% of e-books downloaded in the US are never read.

Apparently, since 2012, the growth of e-books has slowed noticeably as dedicated e-reader sales decline and tablets are increased which offer alternative forms of entertainment.

College students prefer printed textbooks rather than e-books as they ‘help with concentration’.

The top three reasons given for preferring printed books are: lack of eye-strain, the look and feel of the physical book, and the ability to add the book to a library or collection. (I make that four reasons, since ‘look’ and ‘feel’ are two separate sensations. [Sourced this from a market item in Writers’ News, February 2014.]

I’m happy with my home library of about 4,000 printed books and 150 e-books. I’m surprised that college students don’t seem to have taken to the e-book, as the search facility must be useful in their learning process. Both media have their place and although it isn’t mentioned I suspect that e-readers have encouraged young people to read. And of course the sales in erotic fiction has climbed considerably since nobody can see the book’s possibly lurid cover!
 
Happy reading!
 
My e-books are:

Blood of the Dragon Trees (Crooked Cat Publishing)

 
Spanish Eye (Crooked Cat Publishing)

 
Write a western in 30 Days (John Hunt Publishing)

 
Bullets for a Ballot (BTAP Publishing)

 
Death is Another Life (out of print)
 

When the Flowers are in Bloom (Solstice Publishing)

 
My paperbacks are:

Blood of the Dragon Trees (Crooked Cat Publishing)

 
Spanish Eye (Crooked Cat Publishing)

 
Write a western in 30 Days (John Hunt Publishing)

 
Death is Another Life (out of print)

 
When the Flowers are in Bloom (Solstice Publishing)

 

 
'The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.' - Jane Austen

 

2 comments:

Nancy curteman said...

Very interesting post. I thought e-books were more popular than the study shows.

Nik said...

Thanks, Nancy. The sample is only 800, so the views are extrapolated from them... I suspect there's truth in the fact that a good portion of downloaded e-books are not read, whether offered free or not. I've still got in excess of a hundred print books on my shelves waiting to read one day!