Thursday, December 02, 2010

The eBook-Haters Meme

Back before life kicked me in the balls I had flagged this as good blog content for while I was away. Well, now I’m back and I’m going to resurrect this post. I’m not truly and eBook hater, just someone who thinks that the way they are going about it right now is the wrong way.

  1.   Have you ever tried reading an eBook? If so, on what device?
Yes, I’ve read a few relatively short eBooks on my computer.
  2.  What's your single main reason for not reading eBooks?
I think if I’m completely honest it’s that I simply like the feel of a real book in my hands because that’s what I’m used to and comfortable with.
  3.  Are there any other reasons you don't usually read eBooks?
Yes, the biggest of which is DRM. When I buy something, I want to actually own it and be able to do with it as I please. Transfer it from one format to another, from one device to another, etc. I’m no rampant file-sharer, I just want the flexibility to do with it as I please. Also the proprietary format that so many e-readers have is wrong. I want to be able to buy an eBook from Amazon and read it on an Apple product. Or the Nook, or whatever. All eBooks should be in the same format and fully transferable between devices.
  4.  What would it take to get you to read eBooks?
Eliminate DRM and proprietary formatting. Make all eBooks in a single, universal format that is fully transferable. Also, someone would need to buy me an e-reader (I’m probably too lazy and cheap to do it myself).
  5.  What do you think is a fair price for an eBook?
I’m not someone who is hung up on the price issue like so many others. I think a fair price for an eBook is a price that allows a publisher to recover their costs and make a reasonable profit. I don’t know what that price is, but I agree with the idea that it probably varies with time. Related to price, publishers should consider a way for people who purchase the hard copy of a book to get a free (or at least very much reduced price) eBook version. And perhaps vice-versa.
So, what about you?


Jamie Gibbs said...

I agree completely. These are more or less the same reasons why I'd not get an eReader, though lack of space is swaying me more towards getting one now.

redhead said...

I think I just might be a true eBook hater.

Sure, there's the DRM issue, and the pricing issue, and the format issue and the issue of how I love having a physical book in my hands to the point of an almost spiritual fetish.

but I got a bigger problem with eBooks and eReaders. My eyes. they is crap. I simply can not read text on a screen for more than a few minutes.

if bionic eyes are in my future, then eBooks may be as well.

Bryce L. said...

I know the system they have is a pain, but I'm pretty sure it won't be changing at any future time. Without DRM it's way too easy for piracy, so really if you want an eReader, which many have found to be very convenient, you have to be willing to put up with these problems like having to buy everything new. Obviously many have found them to be worth it.

I haven't switched over, I love a physical book in my hands, but I can also see myself getting one. Not for my primary reading, though, only for traveling and similar situations.

Stefan said...

Interesting, thanks. I just completed the meme too.

Walter Rhein said...

I don't have an ereader yet, but I'm considering it. I've read some book length works on my computer and it's not pleasant, but people say the kindle is a much better experience...and I'm sick of carrying 20 lbs of books wherever I go.

SQT said...

I'm caving and getting an eReader this Christmas. What has decided the issue for me is publishers like Orbit and Angry Robot offering downloadable books for reviewers. I'm not aware of the larger publishers doing this yet, but I think it's only a matter of time. I'm just plain running out of space.

Anrake said...

I love eBooks and will always get an electronic version if I can. Most of my reading is on the train, in the office, in coffee shops. There is no reason to lug around a hard copy of Stonewielder when I can get it on my iPhone. There are disadvantages of course, but so far the advantages definitely outweigh them. Bundles would be nice though! print + ebook for no additional charge.

Ellestra said...

For the long time I didn't like e-books. Reading from the screen makes me feel tired. And I like having books.

But I recently moved to another continent moving and storing books really is a problem. So I got Kindle. The e-paper really is much better for the eyes. I can also have the copies of the same book on my computer version of Kindle (and if I had one also on iPhon/Pod/Pad or any android device).

But what really convinced me getting Kindle was a right choice was the fact that I'm reading Stoneweilder on it now without paying for importing it from UK and then waiting for it to be delivered :)

Unknown said...

It seems a shame we cant buy the eBook version with a printed version at a discount - I do like to see the books I've read - and still have the ability to flick within one, whilst appreciating the flexibility of the larger books digitised is what will push me to buying one


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