It seems like everywhere I turn people are downsizing. Many people because of the economy, others because they want to simplify their lives. Still others because they're pursing a dream, or different life goal. For whatever reason, I know many people who are giving away their books.
I know, it makes me want to cry.
But, I can also understand it. Even before the move I had boxes of books I didn't have bookshelf room for.
I know these people, they like books, they still buy books, but they're downsizing their libraries. How does that work?
I came up with only one answer.
Now, I love ebooks. I also love book books. They give me different reading experiences and they both help in different situations. But, I have to ask, are ebooks contributing to the downsizing of personal physical libraries?
The answer I come up with is, yes.
My move would have been a lot harder if I didn't have a kindle. I don't have room for all, or even many, of my books in our interim apartment. I miss them, but I can deal. Mostly because I have a few hundred books on my kindle. Without those, this would have been a lot harder. A lot.
Ebooks are wonderful.
Except I still see a problem.
With books, when a person dies, their libraries can be shared, passed on to future generations. With ebooks, you're only buying a license to have a book. When you die that license expires and your books are gone. You could spend a fortune building an ebook library only to have it electronically disappear on your death, leaving the other readers in your life inheritance-less. So in a way, you're still downsizing.
Nothing is ever perfect, I guess people will do what adjust their library needs to their own situation. I'm still working on my situation but I expect it will be a mix of the two different formats.