Besides enjoying the scent of a hard copy novel, especially an old book, I enjoy sharing a great novel with friends after I’m done.
I totally enjoy reading a romance novel while curled up in bed where I can fantasize that I’m the girl the very hot guy in the book is crazy about, something I doubt I can do if I was reading it on an iPad or laptop.
Reading a book in hard copy is more user friendly that having to deal with any tech problems like for instance if the iPad battery goes down or having to deal with downloading the latest version of the e-book is something I don’t look forward to.
Besides iPads that have the e-book software, with other gadgets, one has to purchase e-book with an electronic card which most Africans to date are still scared to use. Thus they end up downloading pirated copies even with the dangers related to copyright laws.
Tim Challies, in his article “5 Reasons Books are better than E-Books” argued that a book is a single-tasking device. He explained that a book is inherently opposed to multi-tasking. There is very little that can be done while reading a book (apart from the act of reading itself) and the book never seeks to distract its reader.
The book is a single-function device, a technology crafted and honed in order to provide the best possible reading experience. If we wanted to create a technology that would do reading well and do nothing else, I don’t know that we could do better than the book.
He further wrote that e-books on the other hand, tend toward distraction. The devices we use to read our e-books are rarely single-function or, perhaps more correctly, are tending away from single-function. They are created to do many things well, which means that the focus is not only on the reading experience but on gaming, browsing, searching.
The iPad has reading as just one of many functions and a relatively minor one at that. Meanwhile e-books tend to be interactive, to have built-in dictionary searches, hyperlinks and other ways of drawing attention away from the text-at-hand.
Hard copy books have survived the test of time; therefore they should not be abandoned and publishers should not give up on hard copy editions.