Thoughts from a conversation about ebooks today:

Booksellers refusing to adapt to new technology & look for ways to sell books in a format customers want, instead putting out bitterness & resentment aren't doing themselves any favours.

Change is scary when new technology disrupts established business models but shaming readers for wanting ebooks won't stop it. I just don't want to buy stuff from people who make me feel bad.

If you won't sell me a fucking ebook, plenty of people will.



@frankiesaxx I'll second that and pile on:

Amazon is amazing, stop whining. Only rich neighborhoods ever had bookstores; poor, uneducated places can't sustain them. I couldn't buy books before Amazon because I couldn't afford to get an adult to drive me that far.

By the time I was a parent, I lived in places that had bookstores and came to hate them. They stocked the kids' section with toys and distractions that kept reluctant readers from reading, so where's the experience I came to buy?

@HedgeMage I don't care for Amazon's corporate practices and I rarely buy from them BUT we also don't have a domestic Amazon; I don't know if that would change.

The thing about toys and games, I understand. Heh. I know they're higher margin than books but I also recall taking my niece into one when she was about 8 and having to be explicit and really firm that I would only pay for *books*.

@HedgeMage The library was my book mainstay as a kid. Even little towns have them. :)

@frankiesaxx I'd read everything in my tiny local library by the time I was 11 or so. We had an inter-library loan system, but other libraries looked down on us for being a poor, illiterate area and often wouldn't loan books to us even when they were contractually obligated to.

I nearly cried when I discovered Amazon (I was 13 or 14). It was the first time I had real access to books.

@HedgeMage That's amazing. We were lucky I think. The librarians at the one I visited most were always amazing and never batted an eye during any of my reading phases.

@frankiesaxx Our reference librarian was awesome... I should post the blog post I started to write about the fight she went through for me over The Art of Computer Programming (back when it was still a trilogy).

@HedgeMage You should! (I used to have that. Nice box set. *sigh*)

@frankiesaxx Honestly, they have some corners of severe dysfunction, but no more than is probably inevitable in an organization that size. On the whole, I think they do more good than bad, especially taking into account the things that they've given isolated and disadvantaged parts of America access to for the first time. I wouldn't be willing to work there, but as a consumer I'm a fan.

@HedgeMage That's true. My mom's disabled and lives in a rural location and I do use it to buy things for her because I can do it internationally (so many online companies still won't take foreign cards or ship to a different delivery address) and I know it will go to her door.

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