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Monday, January 30, 2012

Are paper books a thing of the past?


The Amazon Kindle was the company's biggest seller out of all their merchandise this last Christmas.  Publishers, authors, and readers are all wondering what the future holds for books actually made out of paper.  I seem to think that a true book lover just can't resist the feeling of a real book in hand...that being said, I'm one of the recipients of a Kindle reader from Santa last year...

Jonathan Franzen, the author of Freedom and The Corrections, launched a passionate defense of the printed book—and an attack on e-books—at the recent Hay Festival in Cartagena, Colombia. “The technology I like is the American paperback edition of Freedom I can spill water on it, and it would still work! So it’s pretty good technology,” said Franzen. “And what’s more, it will work great 10 years from now. So no wonder the capitalists hate it. It’s a bad business model.” 

Wondering whether nonelectronic print will be around in 50 years, he said he fears that “it’s going to be very hard to make the world work if there’s no permanence like that. That kind of radical contingency is not compatible with a system of justice or responsible self-government.”

So what do YOU think?  Will you be reading "real" books in ten years?  Do you own an e-book reader?  Love them both?  Need them both?  What would you say to Jonathan Franzen?