Saturday thoughts – disadvantage of e-books

The subject might not feel like having much to do with photography. So bear with me.

You probably noticed a number of e-book reviews on this blog. I love reading. To be honest, I probably love reading even more than taking pictures. I buy almost every e-book available on subject of photography and consume it on spot.

The introduction of the years ago e-books allowed me the instant download. I could read them on my computer. Not very convenient. Then- on the iPhone- small screen, but I could already move out of my desk into living room sofa. And then came the iPad. It was the end of the paper.. well, almost anything, for me. I stopped printing papers to read for work. I moved all my magazine subscriptions into virtual world of Zinio. I started buying some “real books” as electronic versions. I stopped borrowing the paper books from library- I signed up for a number of electronic services. And on top of it all- more and more e-books are landing in my iBooks library.

I thought there is no way back for me printed media. I saw no advantage. The portability, accessibility, price of electronic was unbeatable.

Until one thing hit me today. None of the e-books, from Craft & Vision or any other site, can I get ever from the local library for free. Sometimes, you don’t want to pay the price, even of $5. You want to read the book, return it, and feel no need to ever go back. I found the huge disadvantage in what I thought is the perfect new reality. If the e-book ever replace the hard copies, and more and more people will go into self-publishing, the availability of the written knowledge will decrease. To those who will afford. Even the small, but still the price.

How about you? Are you embracing the new electronic world? Do you enjoy or despise it? Why?

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