Why Books Will Survive
These days there is no shortage of ways to express ideas in a variety of media, ranging from less-than-140-character Twitter messages to self-produced Flip camera snippets complete with sound.
I’ve always loved technology. Today’s technology-enabled creative and communication opportunities are awesome. Still, I believe books will survive because:
- Authors will always need to create unified and organized pieces of intellectual property that encompass one or many ideas.
- Creating a work as long as a book forces authors to think, plan, and organize work that often requires a full length book to present.
- Serious readers will always need and value the thought that goes into creating such works.
Another reason books have survived as long as they have is because their production, distribution, and use can be accomplished economically.
I say this with full knowledge of the battles currently underway among newspaper publishers losing ad revenue, textbook publishers fending off complaints about unwarranted and unneeded updates, and journal publishers defending against complaints of free government subsidy.
All these events are significant and real, but they have more to do with economics than with the creation and communication of intellectual property. Economics may change, societal preferences for news consumption may change, but the need to communicate ideas with enough organization and detail to provide the basis for thought and reflection remains.
What do you think?
Copyright (c) 2008 by Dennis D. McDonald