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Ebooks or Physical Books?


Eye See You
Site Staff
Nov 28, 2008
I made a thread on this a LONG time ago. My thoughts really haven't changed since then on the issue.

So, these days traditional, physical books are becoming less and less popular. What's increasing in popularity these days are e-books in digital reading devices. What do you prefer?

I have long been determined to never convert to using a digital reader. But... lately, I've been changing my mind on that. I've got my reasons. I prefer longer books, but they're awkward to hold. And if you get a stain on one of the pages somehow, it's basically there forever, there's no cleaning it out. And the spine tends to wear out quickly. Especially if you have someone borrowing it from you that doesn't properly use a bookmark; they're just pressing it flat on a table. Also, when you're going on a trip and you're thinking of bringing something to read, you know you're not going to get through the number of books you'd take, but you don't want to take too few books so as your choice is limited.

Digital readers get around these problems. You can carry hundreds, with some devices thousands, of books. Of course they have their own flaws. The biggest one is glare, it can be difficult to read in the sun. But I wasn't the biggest fan of reading normal books in the sun anyway. Also the screen can get dirty, but that's better than permanent stains on normal book paper. A big one is that e-books are not, as of yet, realistically priced anywhere. Most publishers set the price of e-book versions at the same price as the paperback version, which isn't exactly logical. So you're not exactly saving money by going digital, unless you count needing to replace normal books due to damage or loss.

I finally made my choice and bought an Amazon Kindle, and bought about six ordinary e-books, and about 60 free, out-of-copyright e-books. I'm really liking it so far, but my library's still limited and there's a lot of e-books I want to get.

Anyway, where does everyone stand on books? Digital or not?
Since making that thread three years ago, digital books have mostly gone down in price a bit, but paperback still in many cases is cheaper. When they shouldn't be. I have about 70 books. With another 67 that were free, except one, that are "archived" and not on my device because I didn't think I'd ever read them. All the 70 books I have now are paid books, compared to the 6 I had then, and the 60 free ones I mentioned last time are archived. I'm still firmly dedicated to ebooks. Just nothing about real books appeal to me. They're just not worth it. I still have a lot more books I want to get, mostly Star Wars books, even more so that the EU isn't canon. But I also would like some Star Trek ones.

One good thing that has changed is now mainstream books are starting to be released without DRM. So you have more ownership of them and you can legally convert them to other formats and have them on other devices that don't necessarily have reading software for, say, Amazon books. An example is books made by Electronic Arts, such as Mass Effect and Dragon Age books, which have recently been released without DRM.


Innocent, but not fearful.
Jul 27, 2012
Canada, eh
Definitely the physical book. There's nothing better than getting comfy and cracking open the pages of a new story world that makes you forget about the real world for an hour or two. Plus, dat new book smell doe. :pikalove:


Proud Jesus Freak !
Jun 17, 2014
Yonder Thicket
I love physical books alot but i feel like e books are better for the enviorment it definatly cuts down paper usage by alot (treehugger :P) and e book books are cheaper so im gonna have to go with e books.


Quid est veritas, Claudia
Feb 9, 2010
Well I don't really read as much as I wish I could bring myself to, but when I do, I very much prefer a physical book. Not sure why, I just like being able to actually understand the beginning and the end, and it's all in my control super fast, Idk it's just more simple to me


Dweller of the Clockwork
Jan 23, 2013
Somewhere in Gensokyo and Spiral Haven
I gotta say physical books. It really upset me when Borders shut all their locations down due to the ebooks. I'd always grab a cup of coffee, pick up a manga book, and read for hours. Nowadays, there's only one store left that has that. Thank god for Barnes and Noble.

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