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Mimishu1995's avatar

Do you like ebook or paper book (details inside)

Asked by Mimishu1995 (23443points) March 11th, 2019

Supposed a new book has just been released. And imagine the book is distributed in both ebook form and paper form at the same time. Which form would you be more likely to buy?

I would really appreciate your answer. This question is directly related to my future plan. Your answer will help me a lot.

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22 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

Paper. Forever.

The only time I will use ebooks is if I am traveling (plane, train, etc.) and carrying books would be heavy.

I find that my eyes get more tired reading off a screen.

Dutchess_lll's avatar

Paper. Forever.

Kardamom's avatar

Paper. I find it uncomfortable to read on a computer, or tablet, or any electronic device. It makes my eyes hurt to read long passages.

I also like the tactile sensation of a real book.

chyna's avatar

Ebooks. I never thought I would love them as much as paper books but I do. The ease of sitting home and choosing books is the reason I like them so much. I always have a book to read.

raum's avatar

A book that I’d like to own, paper.
Impulse buy for the airplane, ebook.

seawulf575's avatar

I like the convenience of ebook because I can carry a lot of books very easily. I can read on my e-reader or on my phone. But I also like actually turning pages. If I am going to the beach or somewhere like that (outside), I prefer to have paper, not electrons. Even with the old fashioned e-readers with the matte finish, it is still annoying to use outside.

Jeruba's avatar

I was a very hard sell for a Kindle. I loved and still love paper books. But I allowed myself to be given one as a birthday present a few years ago. And I haven’t been sorry.

There’s no substitute for a paper book. It’s not just the feel, the heft, or the sense that it’s something genuine. It’s also easier to orient yourself in, easier to leaf through, and much easier to annotate. If I know I’m going to read a book with a pencil, which is the case especially with nonfiction, I need a hard copy.

And there’s durability. I expect real books to long outlast any electronic medium. Printed works will be around long after the power has gone out. Ancient texts are still legible; e-books will always be invisible without a special reading device.

But there’s an argument for e-books too. I have had to make quite a few dashes out the door with someone who suddenly had to go to the hospital or a clinic, and then sat waiting for long hours. What I grab as I run is my Kindle. Likewise when I’m out doing a volunteer shift where I may or may not be busy, when I’m waiting for an appointment, when I’m getting on an airplane, and when I just want something physically lightweight (and not a 600-page hardback tome) for the sake of my wrist, I prefer the e-reader.

I read about four or five paper books for every one on the Kindle. But when I just want to browse and sample, I’ve got all of Dickens, Eliot, Lovecraft, Twain, Buchan, and others large and small at my fingertips, along with several dictionaries and the Bible for reference.

When I want to read a new book, these days the first place I look is the public library. If a book is worth keeping and rereading, then I’ll purchase a copy. But I don’t need to own a passing one-time thing.

I do set a limit of $6.00, the most I will pay for an e-book that I can’t really own or sell or give away as I can a hard copy. So far I’ve gone over that amount no more than two or three times. Much of what I want to read is old stuff, usually cheap and sometimes free in electronic form. But then, I’ll often buy those old books from used-book sellers just to sustain the dignity of the work and the medium.

I’m at the stage, though, where I have to get rid of things. I still have thousands of books in my physical library. I’m reducing it gradually but with some determination and trying not to acquire more. So far this year I’ve purchased only nine physical books, and for me that is real restraint. I haven’t bought any e-books yet.

So, in sum, there’s not a single answer to your question other than “It depends.” But I do like having a choice.

snowberry's avatar

The last time I checked, ebooks do not transfer between devices. That’s a dealbreaker for me.

I also have a hard time remembering to put a bookmark on my current page in an ebook so I can flip back through to reread. I prefer paper for these reasons.

flutherother's avatar

The books that mean the most to me I like to keep as paper copies. On the other hand when traveling I take my kindle as I like to travel light. I also like to have my kindle at my bedside in case I wake during the night. It is light, lies flat and can be read with the light off

KNOWITALL's avatar

Paper forever.

jca2's avatar

Paper books are what I prefer, but I must admit I have never owned a Kindle or any other device like that. Maybe one day I’ll own a Kindle and then I will appreciate it the way others do.

If there’s a magazine article that I want to read, at work I will print it out on paper and then I can look at it, carry it, read it elsewhere.

I hear that audio books are the way to go when you want to get through a book (like for the book group when we have a time constraint).

So my answer is paper.

canidmajor's avatar

In your scenario, I would definitely say ebook. First of all, the book costs less in digital format than paper. Secondly, I can adjust font type and size which is quite a boon when my eyes are tired. Thirdly, I can get it wherever there is WiFi, immediately. Fourth, I can carry an entire series with me.
As long as I have the app (I have a nook) I can access my entire digital library on all my devices.
I still have a bunch of paper titles in my home, I still like to read paper sometimes.

It’s the words that make the book, not the delivery system (obviously that statement excludes books that have pictures)

And I wish I could attribute this, but I don’t know where it originated (and this is paraphrased):
“If I remember that I am holding a pound of paper while I am reading, then the author hasn’t done their job right.”

canidmajor's avatar

Just thought of this.
I get a lot of my ebooks from sources like Bookbub ( which has a daily selection of deeply discounted titles. Many good authors are represented, I have found some really excellent books here, which then prompt me to buy more titles from them.
There are other such sites you can go to as well.

chyna's avatar

^And they have free books, also. I have found new authors that I like from downloading the freebies. @Canidmajor shared that site with me months ago and I love it. In the six or seven months I have had my Kindle, I have spent less than 20.00 on books, and I read every day.
My local library lets me borrow on a site called Libby.
My only concern is that I am not getting out as much as I used to since getting books to read from my couch is so easy.

Demosthenes's avatar

Paper books are my choice. I’m a millennial and have embraced most “modern” media formats, but I love my paper books and my vinyl records (and CDs for lossless music). If a new book had come out, available in both digital and print, I would still go for the print. If I didn’t want to pay full price for it, there’s always the library.

Yes, I have tried eBooks and of course the advantages are obvious: being able to adjust font size, not needing good lighting to read, the ability to have many books in a single device. But I never could get into them. I’d be reading an eBook and wish I had the print edition. I prefer the feel of a paper book in my hands, turning an actual page, being able to feel how much I’ve read and how much I have left to read (not to mention the smell and the charm of reading older books). Additionally, I sometimes read linguistics textbooks and their charts and diagrams never port into eBook format well (they’re blurry or special characters don’t show up properly). Then there’s the price. Yes, an eBook often costs less than a brand new paper book, but I don’t generally buy brand new books. I buy used books, which if I’m buying them at my library’s sales, may cost only $2 for a hardback in excellent condition (even at my favorite used bookstore, the price is rarely more than $7). If the choice is between that and a $10–15 eBook, it’s a no-brainer for me.

And now since I actually fear that paper books may disappear from our society, my preference for them is even stronger. I have hundreds of books and I intend to continue to add to my collection (and occasionally get rid of some) for the rest of my life.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I only buy ebooks to save money and space. I lost most of them when my laptop crashed. Now I only have three ebooks that I haven’t read.

canidmajor's avatar

@RedDeerGuy1, if your elibrary was pirated, well, it’s too bad you lost it in the crash, but I don’t have huge sympathies. If the ebooks were legitimately purchased, they are retrievable through your account.

Inspired_2write's avatar

I prefer Paper books as it saves digital glare on the eyes.

Patty_Melt's avatar

Let me share my e-book experience.
I took a membership on Smashwords, because I wanted to consider publishing there.
It is very cool. Every member has a free library, which means any books they purchase, or free books chosen, can be kept in that library to reread any time.
Readers can choose page and print colors, to sooth tired eyes. I like that feature a lot. Font and size are also adjustable.
Most of the books there can be read on any device, including phone or PC. Once a book is in your library, you can access it from other devices, so long as you remember your password to your account.
Anything can be published for free. That means posted work is sometimes very good, sometimes very bad, but every author gets a chance to be read.
Because of that, many authors offer free samples, to help readers decide if they want to purchase more.

My hesitance to be published there is popularity.
I don’t know how many readers shop there. That is why I have decided to test the waters with a few shorts.
There are thousands of works available there. I don’t understand my tech well enough to sort through the choices.
There are a few languages available. I think they are looking for more language choices.

I have to purchase data, because I have no internet, so I’m just paper right now, but when I had internet I was sampling authors there.

I know I have already discussed this with you, but I am posting anyway in case someone can benefit from the info.

Caravanfan's avatar

I prefer audiobooks, actually. After that e books, because I can read them backlit at night and increase the font size.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@All thank you a lot for answering! All of your answers have been taken into consideration.

AshlynM's avatar

I prefer paper books. Nothing like the smell of a brand new book. Books are a treasure. I like reading the same book over and over again, because I know what will happen.
I have a ton of paper books, some I’ve collected through my childhood. I usually read Ebooks when I travel, my iPad is loaded with them, most of them free. But I normally reach for paper books first.

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