Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Value of Printed Media

As I was traveling along part of the Shameless Giveaway Hop, one of the entries wanted our opinions on the proper price for e-books. It got me thinking a little more about the theory behind e-books in general. I've always been a bit mixed in my views in regard to technology in general. Mostly my attitude came about because I never even had a computer of my own until I was a senior in college--and then only because a pre-law friend of mine gave me her hand-me-down. I was very grateful since I had been using a step-up from a type writer, a Brother word-processor. I loved that old thing, even though I had to feed each page by hand. But the thing is, I don't really like change. And technology requires constant change. Anyway, I thought I'd put down here my thoughts about e-books in general because now that I have them, I don't want to give mine up! 

So, for the survey, I wrote:

I don’t believe I have ever paid more than $7.00 for an e-book. Some may be priced higher than that, but I wait for a coupon code at various publishers or go to Amazon after the book has been out a while. I am in an area where only a very few, mainstream authors are purchased by the library and there is not a large trading system like there was back home. And, unless something has changed very recently, there are no e-books to be used for free either. There are only a handful of internet-ready computers anyway.
So, my best bet are the cheaper e-books, sharing e-books at places like goodreads with the nook and kindle apps, and going to the flea market where we can buy, sell, and trade hard copies of books for .50-$2.00. The problem with the flea market is that you are at the mercy of whatever other people are reading and the weather. I went to an e-reader and computer so my husband also wouldn’t have the physical reminder of my hobby (mounds and mounds of books!). If I am not allowed to resell an e-book (which I totally understand) or share it multiple times with as many people as I want, then it should cost significantly less than a hard copy book.
But, in order to not have hard copy books disappear completely like some movie rental places have been because of things like netflix, the price should definitely be more than, say .99. It would be a real shame if my children’s children don’t get to build up their arm muscles like we did when we were in school! And now most research in college classes are being done in data bases instead of in the stacks. So I know not getting to rely on printed materials very soon in the future is no idle fear.
Think about the drive in movie theaters. I loved them as a child. Now you can hardly find one. Cost efficiency experts are costing us and our descendants far more than a few dollars. It’s changing our world. I love my Kindle. But I don’t fondly look at it and think about passing it on to my grandchildren the way I treasure the Secret Garden and the Children’s Book of Poetry my neighbor gave me when I was young. She was born in 1901 and died while I was in college. Think about all that she had seen and done. And what were two of the things she gave me–books.

Let me know what you think.....

1 comment:

  1. I remember drive-ins very well myself, from a young age, and it's a shame that they've all but disappeared. They provided an experience that went beyond merely watching the movie or movies. Gosh, I can remember going on the weekend and seeing a triple feature. You don't even get doubles now.

    Print is my media of choice. I don't even have an e-reader, although I have ebooks on my computer. It's just not the same as holding a book in your hands, inhaling that fresh book scent, and getting comfortable for your read.

    I suspect they'll become entirely passe someday, but hopefully not til after I've shuffled off this mortal coil. Good blog!


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