Then, while I was writing the music industry piece for PJM, I wanted to re-read The Long Tail. Iâ€™d long ago lent my copy to someone, I didnâ€™t know who. I could have ordered another copy, for about $18, and gotten it in one day (for another $4 shipping) â€¦ or I could push the one-click button and have it delivered to my Kindle for $10. Right now. Less than a minute later, I had it.
Pick your reason: Just in time delivery, long battery life, that e-paper screen, the ability to tote an entire library around in your coat pocket, ease of reading, you name it: Once people start using an e-book reader (especially the Kindle, it seems) they become hooked.
I wish I’d bought the Kindle – not for the connectivity, which I can more or less duplicate by lugging my notebook around with me, since it has EVDO – but for the huge amount of material available from Amazon. Still, I have to hope that Sony will beef up their own offerings, and that publishers will start to get clued in. The latest book in the John Sandford Prey series was just released, and even Amazon didn’t have an e-book version. I have to admit that irritated the hell out of me. I had to pay eight bucks more than I should have, and go into a Borders and lug around a huge, heavy, unwieldy hardcover, in order to read it. And then I have to store the damn thing on my already groaning, overstuffed shelves. What a pain in the ass.
The point is that people are being converted to these readers easily and quickly because of something their detractors – most of whom haven’t tried them – fail to understand. They are better at delivering the entire reading experience, from purchase to storage, than paper books. And once the price point of these readers drops by fifty percent or so, that will become obvious even to the obtuse, DRB-obsessed Luddite mandarins who run the publishing biz. (via Instapundit).