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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/kathleen-parker-print-books-face-their-final-chapter/2012/12/28/65324e82-5121-11e2-8b49-64675006147f_story.html

Yes, the words are the same, whether perceived on paper or on a small, illuminated screen. But the experience is not. One can read "One Hundred Years of Solitude" on a Kindle or an iPad, but one cannot see, hear, feel and smell the story in the same way. I'm unlikely to race to the sofa, there to nuzzle an electronic gizmo, with the same anticipation as with a book. Or to the hammock with the same relish I would with a new magazine. Somehow, napping with a gadget blinking notice of its dwindling power doesn't hold the same appeal as falling asleep in the hammock with your paperback opened to where you dozed off.

This is not mysterious. Paper, because it is real, provides an organic connection to our natural world: The tree from whence the paper came; the sun, water and soil that nourished the tree. By contrast, a digital device is alien, man-made, hard and cold to human flesh.
Sigh...is she reading scratch-and-sniff books? I know that we have had members extoll the smell of books, but I can't say it's ever been something I thought of unless dust in the book made me sneeze.

(By the way, let's try to keep hate email to Ms. Parker at a minimum.. :)).

Betsy
 

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Wellll she works for a newspaper.

I still have some paperback romances with favorite bits that I can remember approximately how far into the book I need to thumb, and can visualize where on the page (right, left, upper, middle, lower) a certain passage is. You can't get that sensory perception of where something is in the same way on an eReader.

That said, it would take a heck of a lot for me to give up my Kindle!
 

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I was one of those people who worried that reading on a Kindle might not be as pleasurable as reading a 'real' book. But it didn't take me long to realise that while it's different in some ways, it's still just as pleasurable.

I can't imagine not having a Kindle now and I have to wonder whether this lady has simply not tried using an e-reader - as in actually used it to read a whole book - and is just making assumptions. Or maybe she knows it can be a contentious subject and she's just trying to drum up response to her article. Nothing worse for a writer than being ignored!

I don't think it matters in the end - I think both e-readers and paper books are here to stay for the foreseeable future and no-one will be forced to read in a medium they don't like.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Linjeakel said:
I don't think it matters in the end - I think both e-readers and paper books are here to stay for the foreseeable future and no-one will be forced to read in a medium they don't like.
Exactly. Hubby reads on his grubby ol' paper and I read on my shiny bright electronics. And I'm OK with that. :D (See, I'm perfectly unbaised, LOL!)

Betsy
 

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You know. . . . I read part of that article this morning. . . .in my Kindle edition of the Washington Post. . . .I think I only read the first page or so, though, because I didn't feel like she was adding anything new to the discussion.  Plus, I initially had the impression she was mostly bemoaning the last paper issue of Newsweek.  I suppose I should go read the whole thing. . . . I did follow the link . . . . looked at a few comments which, surprisingly, seem to be fairly cordial, whether in agreement or not.

Seems there was another article about ebooks in the 'paper' today too. :-\

For the record, what my husband does to get my blood pressure up is turn on Judge Judy, et al. ::) ;D
 

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As someone who has moved house once or twice a year for the last few years, paper books and similar items of antiquity are a right royal pain. Bye-bye 400 LPs, bye-bye bookshelf. Give me an mp3 player and an eReader any day.
 

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There are people who think nothing beats the sound of their 78 RPM records, because that is what they were brought up on. It doesn't matter that CDs scientifically are a much truer reproduction of the original sound, some people like the sound they were brought up on. If someone wants to snuggle with their paper books, so be it. I will suggle with my PW in the dark happily reading without having to turn on any light that may bother anyone else. The one thing that does surprise me in situations like this is the certitude that some people have that their likes and dislikes are as "given by God". I like chocolate ice cream, but I don't think it is inherently superior to other flavors (well, except maybe for pecan which everyone knows is an inferior flavor ;)).

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
stevene9 said:
I like chocolate ice cream, but I don't think it is inherently superior to other flavors (well, except maybe for pecan which everyone knows is an inferior flavor ;)).

Steve
OK, this one I would have to argue with you on; both on the inherent superiority of chocolate ice cream AND that pecan is inferior (on behalf of hubby). But then hubby likes paper books, too. ;D

Betsy
 

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Betsy the Quilter said:
OK, this one I would have to argue with you on; both on the inherent superiority of chocolate ice cream AND that pecan is inferior (on behalf of hubby). But then hubby likes paper books, too. ;D

Betsy
You see, just like I said, he's not normal. But it must have really been true love for you to marry someone who likes pecan - you're so brave! :D

Steve
 

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Betsy,

LOVE your comment about the "scratch & sniff books"!  Ha-ha! :)  

I like the smell of reading purchased books too (though not from the library), but I found that I don't miss it that much anymore.  I'm more worried about potential...unwanted critters/guests hiding in the pages, our local news program did a story about one of our major universities having to freeze their library books.  Apparently 1-2 books were returned that contained bedbugs.  I guess you can say that with ebooks, no fear of bringing home little unwanted critters.

But honestly, why do some people want to peg others in one camp versus another?  Is it just me, or does it seem people who INSIST that reading must be a DTB the more "uptight" or "rigid"?  It's like "Chicken Little" and the sky is falling.  

Tris

PS. I do a big mixture of both DTB and ebook, and a majority of my reading material comes from my local library.
 

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Since my Kindle has a nice leather cover, I consider that I now have a library full of leather-bound books, something I always wanted. I admit, I do have a tendency to stroke the cover before opening. Probably some sort of atavistic sensory memory thing from opening paper books for (hem-hem) years.

 

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Wow,I read to get lost in the story. There are times when I don't even know what I'm reading it on. How silly of that journalist, especially as someone pointed out there are probably more people reading her column online than on paper.
 

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"Paper, because it is real, provides an organic connection to our natural world: The tree from whence the paper came; the sun, water and soil that nourished the tree. By contrast, a digital device is alien, man-made, hard and cold to human flesh."

Did an editor see this paragraph? This is inconsistent nonsense. Does she not realize that paper is man-made? That books are man-made? That books don't grow that way on the tree?

I fail to see how pressed tree pulp and glue are inherently better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, as was pointed out earlier, she's waxing nostalgic for paper because Newsweek's last issue came out....

Betsy
 

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Linjeakel said:
I can't imagine not having a Kindle now and I have to wonder whether this lady has simply not tried using an e-reader - as in actually used it to read a whole book - and is just making assumptions.
I don't think she has read on an eInk device... the fact that she refers to all ereaders as having "illuminated screens" suggests that she has only tested it on a backlit tablet device. While the Paperwhite does have illumination, it does not have to be used to a degree where it looks lit up.

The other thing I really object to is "but one cannot see, hear, feel and smell the story in the same way." No - you may not be able to see, hear, feel, and smell the physical BOOK the same way but the STORY comes alive regardless. The sights, sounds, feelings, and smells within the STORY are still there, in the written word, regardless of what format or medium one reads them on. If the sight, sounds, feelings, and smells of the physical BOOK are important to you, fair enough but do NOT confuse the words 'book' and 'story'.

I really just don't understand why people feel the need to be so vocal about their hatred for ebooks. If it's not your thing, fine, don't use them. I've always hated hardcovers because they are too big, heavy, and the jackets always annoy me when they slide around. But do I make a big freaking song and dance about it? Do I practically launch a campaign against them? Do I claim that one can't fully enjoy the story in the same way with a hardcover? No. I read my chosen format and I let others do the same.
 

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Confession: I said the SAME thing when e-readers came out. Then a friend lent me her K1 for a week... "just to try it"

Yeah, I had the K2 on pre-order so fast, it would make your head spin. She's obviously never read on a true e-ink device. You lose yourself just as easily and you don't have to carry around a 3 pound book and/or hide the cover of your porn... not that I read that... nope. Not me. I read War & Peace and...

Confession 2: I HATED 100 Years. I couldn't even finish it. I obviously don't know good literature. OBVIOUSLY. I read smut and indie authors, mostly.
 

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I didn't sniff and snuggle my books when I was reading paper books. I don't miss the smell; I liked it but it was a very small part of my book reading experience. Shakespeare's sonnets aren't more poetic because you can smell the material through which they are read, nor are they less so when read on an ebook reader.

I hate it when people constantly deride ereaders. If they don't like it, that's okay, they don't have to - but why bother those of us who do like them?
 

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history_lover said:
I don't think she has read on an eInk device... the fact that she refers to all ereaders as having "illuminated screens" suggests that she has only tested it on a backlit tablet device. While the Paperwhite does have illumination, it does not have to be used to a degree where it looks lit up.

The other thing I really object to is "but one cannot see, hear, feel and smell the story in the same way." No - you may not be able to see, hear, feel, and smell the physical BOOK the same way but the STORY comes alive regardless. The sights, sounds, feelings, and smells within the STORY are still there, in the written word, regardless of what format or medium one reads them on. If the sight, sounds, feelings, and smells of the physical BOOK are important to you, fair enough but do NOT confuse the words 'book' and 'story'.

I really just don't understand why people feel the need to be so vocal about their hatred for ebooks. If it's not your thing, fine, don't use them. I've always hated hardcovers because they are too big, heavy, and the jackets always annoy me when they slide around. But do I make a big freaking song and dance about it? Do I practically launch a campaign against them? Do I claim that one can't fully enjoy the story in the same way with a hardcover? No. I read my chosen format and I let others do the same.
I could have written your post, right down to the irritation with hardcovers and their annoying jackets. lol. I only bought hardcovers if it was a book by a favorite author and I couldn't wait to read it. The first thing I would do would be to take the jacket off. I always meant to keep the jacket in good condition but it usually ended up falling off my nightstand and then getting stepped on and kicked under the bed.

I always want to tell someone who objects to an ebook because it isn't real, to go buy a ream of paper and get cozy on the sofa to read it. Since the pages would be blank, they would no doubt look at me like I was crazy, but it might drive home the fact that a book is about the story, not the medium.
 
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