ABSTRACT: Is technology the bonfire that is burning away the need for books produced in the paper form, a staple since the more than a century ago invention of Gutenberg’s press? Will the continued advances of electronic books and digital publishing make print books as anachronistic as a VHS cassette tape in the world of DVD’s and digital downloads? Do print books still have a place? Or, is the real point that whatever the medium – electronic or paper – people are reading?
Technology – digital publishing, e-books, electronic readers, and reference and author-written sites on the World Wide Web – make reading open to, and available for, a wider audience. Technology is not so much a dissuader of reading. Instead, technology is helping to make more of us readers by providing us with convenience, access, and motivation.
Society can take the two co-existing without making a hard and fast decision to let one go in favor of the other. As in most technological shifts from the former to the newer, there is need for overlap and transition. The bounty of it all for the reader is that she can more easily incorporate reading into her lifestyle needs because she has time, access, and motivation.
I explored the issue by reading online articles, Web sites and journals, and reading current newspapers about the topic. I searched scholarly online library collections and used search engines.
In this final project of the UNC Chapel Hill School of Journalism Class 713, I and my classmates were asked to research and write an essay about a global communication issue that we — individually — feel strongly about.
E-books and other means of providing opportunities for good books and literature to be made available to all is important to me and others who enjoy reading.
This blog, which was created out of the class, is the place where visitors will be able to read my essay and offer comment.
Embrace E-Books – but Hold-Off on Paper Book Bonfires or Burials