What does it mean when what you own is essential to who you are? In our everyday grasp of owning things, we tag it materialism, consumerism, consumption. But I trust you’ll agree that the possession of books is not identical to the possession of shoes: Someone with a thousand books is someone you want to talk to; someone with a thousand shoes is someone you suspect of belonging to the Kardashian clan. Books are not objects in the same way that shoes are objects.
Genul ăsta de pledoarii, pentru farmecul cărților tipărite, apar o dată la câteva luni, dar a lui Giraldi e una dintre cele mai convingătoare:
Like the bicycle, the book is a perfect invention, and perfection dies very, very hard. The car hasn’t murdered the bike, and the Web won’t murder the book. There are innumerable readers for whom the collecting of physical books will remain forever essential to our selfhoods, to our savoring of pleasure and attempted acquisition of wisdom, to our emotional links with our past and our psychological apprehension of others—essential not just as extensions of our identities but as embodiments of those identities. Books, like love, make life worth living.
Autorul menționează în trecere cărțile “delectabile” publicate de The Folio Society, o mică editură londoneză. De când am descoperit-o, acum câteva luni, tot pierd vremea căutând chilipiruri la anticariate online. Dacă vă plac cărțile ca obiecte meșteșugite, nu doar ca suporturi pentru scris, o să vă placă Folio.
The most important thing to observe is that books don’t just compete against books. Books compete against people reading blogs and news articles and playing video games and watching TV and going to see movies.
Books are the competitive set for leisure time. It takes many hours to read a book. It’s a big commitment. If you narrow your field of view and only think about books competing against books, you make really bad decisions. What we really have to do, if we want a healthy culture of long-form reading, is to make books more accessible. (…)
The vision for Kindle is every book, every imprint, in any language, all available in 60 seconds. That’s a multi-decade vision. We’ve been working on it for a decade now, and we’ve made huge progress. We’re making books easier to get, more affordable, more accessible. It’s a fantastic mission. The Kindle team is very dedicated to it, and they’re doing a great job. You are getting more reading.
Apropo de echipa care se ocupă de Kindle, câțiva dintre lideri au discutat cu The Verge, care are un reportaj amplu despre viitorul proiectului Kindle. Vorbind despre competiția împotriva televiziunii și jocurilor, industrii care evoluează intens, Russ Grandinetti spune:
Our job is to invent all the things we can to make taking that journey as pleasurable and as rewarding as possible. And I don’t think it’s mine to say, or ours to say, if you want to talk about it in zero-sum terms, that books are going to do better or worse in the future … Where reading will go will be determined, enhanced, or constrained by how inventive we can be in how we support it.