E-Books vs Print Books … Blah, blah, blah

I have become quite weary of the e-books vs print books debate. It’s all very emotional; print books feel good, e-books are always with you, print books smell nice, e-books don’t smell, etc. etc.

I am always surprised that these very earnest articles and posts seem to want us to choose between the formats, as if one is right and the other wrong.

Fortunately, some folks are thinking more deeply about this. I commend to you Craig Mod’s Post-Artifact Books & Publishing. Awkward title, excellent article. By focusing on the nature of authorship and readership in a digitally transformed environment, Mod is able to ask a few very critical and revealing questions:

Everyone asks, ‘How do we change books to read them digitally?’ But the more interesting question is, ‘How does digital change books?’ And, similarly, ‘How does digital change the authorship process?’

His observations are a challenge to many of our assumptions about books and publishing, but they open up new opportunities that are truly exciting. Transforming the role of authors and readers will transform the book.

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