Long Live e-Reading

The day has come. The day where I ditch flipping the pages for flicking the screen. Highlighters have been replaced with the tap of a finger to mark my place.

Yep. I am now an e-reader convert.

I was always one of those people, a purist if you will, that refused to get on the e-reader wagon. I considered them a waste of money (“It’s not quite a computer, and a little obnoxious for a book – what a waste.”), but more than anything I saw the rise of the digital book trend to be an end of the experience one has when reading.

You see, reading is so much more to me than the flip of a page. It’s a break from the norm, a chance to escape the everyday, and being that being on the Internet constantly is almost essential for my line of work, it’s always been nice to close the laptop and pick up a book.

Reading Technology

Was it not for my Kindle Fire Christmas present this past year, I can pretty much guarantee you I’d still be arguing that which I have above. That books are king, the e-reading business is going to kill off the already dying printing industry, we’re all becoming much too dependent on technology, yadda yadda. But now that I am the owner of one of these devil devices, I can tell you that having an e-reader doesn’t really affect any of the aforementioned arguments.

Sure, the printing industry is suffering quite a bit, but I hold out hope that things will take a turn for the better. My marketing instincts always steer my advice to clients and non- alike that an integrated marketing approach will help not only save the industry from going under, but keep it treading water and, eventually, more than stay afloat. Having a support system that encourages both online and offline customers will bring more revenue to the printing sector, and costs will be cut thanks to having a wider online audience. That may be a somewhat naive comment to make, but one must recognize there is value in that thinking.

And as for the argument of technology taking over, well, yes, there are more and more devices each day that take us away from traditional print, from writing our thoughts out and directing them towards the keyboard instead. However, what technology is helping us achieve should justify our greater adoption of tech devices. In this case, I may be shying away from print and finding myself clinging to the Kindle Fire more, but that’s just it – I am reading more than ever.

There are reports out there that due to social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, whatevz.com (not a network, but I felt another “yadda” would cheapen this post), have shortened our attention spans so much that we can’t stand to read something for more than a few minutes. Online video views are higher than ever, but people don’t particularly like to watch anything longer than 1-2 minutes. I work in social media – I am absolutely one of those people I’ve just described. But now I have access to a mini-library in the form of a portable tablet, and I’ll tell you, I find myself getting lost in the virtual pages for hours at a time. I am now skipping catching up on Hulu or continuing on my hunt for the world’s next best animated GIF to see what Peeta Mellark is up to, or pondering which I wish I’d known when I was 20. It may not be the preferred medium of college professors, authors, heads of The New York Times, but no one can knock the end result. E-readers can very well get us back into books. How can you be against that?

I am an e-reader convert.

Why aren’t you?


About Amanda Vance

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3 responses to “Long Live e-Reading

  1. I have to admit that I am somewhat of a purist. I say somewhat because last year my mom brought an e-reader (an android tablet that is flipping awesome) and I realized that I actually enjoyed reading an electronic book. I can spout all of the old cliches that you mentioned but for me, personally, its about being able to see all of the books. I have a personal collection of over three hundred books and my dream is to one day be able to fill up a room with shelves and shelves of books. With electronic books it just wouldn’t be the same. That being said I am ashamed to admit it but I will probably buy one when I have extra money to spend on an expensive tablet because I love the portability. For now, however, I think that I will stick to the physical, worn out pages of Jane Eyre. Or maybe…..*brilliant idea alert*…….. maybe I will buy two copies of the books I really enjoy – one electronic and the other physical – that way I can have my chicken bacon ranch sub and eat it too! I can only hope that I will be able to make peace with abandoning the “cause” as you have.

    • I grew up in a house full of books. My dad would fill bookcase upon bookcase with books he’d collected over the years. He would even line the stairs with his massive collection as we’d run out of room constantly. Books have always been a huge part of my life, even if only physically, so I understand your viewpoint. However, for me, and it sounds like it’s true a little on your end as well, it’s more for nostalgia’s sake that we wish to keep reaching for an actual book. The look of bookshelves filled with novels is reminiscent of childhood, days in which my dad was teaching me to read, or times when I would get lost in thought and let my imagination run wild when flipping through the pages of the Harry Potter series (wow – I mentioned The Hunger Games and Harry Potter in one post. I have somewhat more refined taste in reading, I promise). These moments keep me wanting to purchase paper and hardback books if simply to drum-up the feelings I had in youth. But who says we can’t create new ones on e-readers?
      As far as your tablet purchase, you might want to hold off. Rumors of the iPad 3 coming very soon are going around everywhere. Sure to be ‘spensive, but that means the older versions will be available for a big discount! You can enjoy the sub, eat it, and read, too!

  2. I’m reluctant to convert to e-reading, just because I work with computers all day long and I relax with holding a REAL cloth and paper book in my hand. Sorry for the shout back there, but my brain needs to unplug from screens and e-reading, I think would fry them more. Have you check out the “Joy of Books” video? I uploaded to my blog. I guess the video just kind of captures it all.
    Blue skies and happy pages,

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