National Dictionary Day: Fun Facts About a Favorite Resource

Posted October 17, 2017

Dictionary Day celebrates the birthday of American lexicographer Noah Webster, who was born on October 16, 1758.

Baker & Taylor Launches Publisher Services Business

Posted September 29, 2017

Baker & Taylor has announced the launch of Baker & Taylor Publisher Services (BTPS).

New Book on Trump’s World View from Noted Historians

Posted September 29, 2017

Noted historians explore how Trump’s foreign policy views aren’t new in American history, but are based on beliefs deeply rooted in U.S. history.

Disaster Recovery Project Management Book: Price Drop in Response to Recent Events

Posted September 22, 2017

Purdue University Press has temporarily dropped the list price of Disaster Recovery Project Management: Bringing Order from Chaos.

Print Book vs. eBook

May 24, 2012

Print book vs. eBook, that one question on our Facebook fan page led me to roam the halls of Bookmasters, and crawl every forum and article written on the subject to find the answer. Who is the winner of this fight of the century? After hours of research and holding one hardcover book in one hand and an eReader in the other here are the results.

Some reasons people prefer eBooks:

  • Storage - People can store hundreds, even thousands, of books within one device.
  • Ease of purchase - Buying an eBook is just a click away.
  • Portability - The worst thing is finishing a book on vacation and not having the next book to start.
  • Price - The price of an eBook is usually less than a print book.
  • Purchasing Options - A person can find an eBook at almost 80 different online outlets.

What it comes down to is accessibility across the board. It’s a cure for the “right here, right now” syndrome that people can experience when buying new things. The books are available for purchase and reading at any time and any place (battery permitting).

Some reasons people prefer print books:

  • Tangibility - They get a tangible item for their money.
  • Accomplishment - They feel more accomplished when the mass of the book moves from the right side to the left and they know they are almost done.
  • Library - Some people like to have a library of books to select from.
  • Aroma - Some people like the smell.
  • DIY - One person has said she couldn’t use a stack of eBooks to prop up her couch if the leg fell off.

In all seriousness some people just prefer the print book because that’s what reading is about to them. Reading is going to the bookstore and browsing through hundreds, maybe thousands, of books to find the right one.  Then after finding the right book, taking it home and sitting down to escape life just for a moment. It’s about going to the bookshelf to pick out a book that may have been forgotten for some time. Some people think it is about age demographic and everything might change, but for now print books are here in force. All-in-all, it’s not something you can explain in full detail, but rather it’s something felt and expressed by avid book readers everywhere.

For The Publisher

The decision to print your book, release only as eBook, or do both, is a decision that is made early on in the process.  However, due to industry changes, it’s one that can be changed later in the process. Printing a book used to mean printing a large quantity and hope that everything sold, but since the very first eBook ISBN was released, printing companies began to change their ways. Print on Demand, or POD, is the new phrase that is teamed up with the conversation on eBooks. Why POD? The statistics all show that eBook sales are flying through the roof, but forums and our own Bookmasters Facebook page show that people still want to feel the real book in their hands. That leads us to POD. Printing a small quantity leaves room in the budget to convert to an eBook and when the eBook penetrates the market, it brings exposure for the print book as well. If the book starts to fly off the shelves, it’s possible to print a more substantial quantity of books to meet demand.

Is print book vs. eBook the fight of the century? Or maybe the best tag team wresting match to hit the book industry?


Personal Interviews with Bookmasters employees.