Saturday, January 25, 2014

E-books vs. print books!

This is a Guest Blog by Aisha Gupta.

What happened in the last two years is that e-books have incredibly (or maybe not) outsold print books, starting an actual revolution for what concerns the publishing industry and reading traditions. The popularity of e-books keeps growing and so does
Image courtesy of adamr /
the number of sold e-readers.
The reasons why e-books sold more than traditional books are many: first of all,  their weight, which is basically null due to the fact that hundreds of e-books are contained in a single, incredibly light e-book reader or tablet. But also their price, which can be in some cases considerably lower. You can find  e-books for a really low price, many discounts or free downloads on sites like this one. But of course, you can spare some money even if you still prefer print books by buying second hand books. And you don't have to go to markets or books store, since you can find them even on the Internet (here an example of an Indian website with free classifieds). Also, font flexibility allows readers to enlarge what they’re reading, making it easier and more relaxing for the eye, besides choosing the font that stresses the eye less. Last but not least, from an ecological point of view, they save trees, reducing the amount of paper, even though they certainly use more energy to be produced.
But of course, they don’t come without cons. For obvious reasons, you have to charge them and they can run out of battery, where a book doesn’t have this problem, of course. Also, unlike paper, some screens are not that easy to read from and, in general, e-reading stresses the eyes more than a traditional reading.
Moreover, last but not least, there is a whole pro and cons list dedicated to the experience that an e-book can (not) offer in comparison with a traditional book. First of all, books come with a material presence, which can be felt underneath your fingertips, by flicking pages and so on. Also, you can truly own a book and you can land it, allowing you to build relations with people and to feel like the true owner of that copy, which can be charged with spiritual and emotional value, like every other object.

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