The first e-reader, the Sony Librie, was released in 2004; with all the different kinds of e-readers that are available today, the debate lives on: e-readers or books?
I first heard the debate in 2010, when society was suddenly split between Team Book and Team Kindle. My opinion has not changed since then; I like both, and will use either in varying situations. For example, while I love to write in the margins in tangible books, digital books are cheaper. As an English major, I had to purchase at least three books per class. Buying Kindle books was the financially smart option for me since classics are usually free! However, if I found a place for tangible books that was cheaper than Amazon, I would go that route. I was flexible for fiscal reasons, and I’m no less of a reader for using all formats.
I never understand the vehement backlash that e-readers get. The books are usually cheaper, the reader can have the book in their possession the moment they buy it, and an entire library can be transported with one device! People who may have trouble reading tangible books may find that reading the sans serif font on a device is easier on their eyes; not to mention the ability to change the size of the font! I personally love reading on a device because I can opt to have a black background with white text, which is easier for me to read.
There is another reason I am not a fan of this debate. Here are some other ways the debate can be described:
- Team Cave Wall vs. Team Clay
- Team Stone vs. Team Bamboo
- Team Papyrus vs. Team Parchment
- Team Scroll vs. Team Manuscript
I personally use all kinds of avenues for my reading experience. With so many options available to this generation of reading, why not use them? Though I prefer paperback, I love all kinds of tangible books. I find digitalized books more convenient for travel; I don’t know what I would do without my fourth-generation Kindle. I also use the Kindle, Nook, iBooks, Librivox, and Wattpad apps on my phone, usually to read smaller books. But I still have three bookshelves in my home, stocked with all kinds of tangible books, dating back at least to the nineteenth century.
No one is more or less a reader based on their personal preference. Refusing to read via e-reader is a personal choice, choosing to only read digital books is a personal choice, choosing both formats is a personal choice. The act of reading in all forms is beautiful.