The culture of reading in the United States has gradually changed through time; especially with the onset of the entrant of new age technology into the scene (Avrin, 1991, 83). Notably, it could be realized that with the development of technology comes the changes on how people’s perception towards reading also adjusts. It could be analyzed that somehow, people have become more concerned about easier options of reading (Patkus, 2003, 89). With technology, changes in information sharing and retrieval have also been administered according to the adjustments that occurred with regards the said aspect of modern living. Most likely, these changes impact the overall determination of how people would opt to receive news and find the information they need especially regarding particular topics that are specifically interesting to them. Among the specific matters affected by these changes include the literacy of individuals who choose technology over the classical form of books that have been used for getting information for ages (Clapham, 2000, 377).
The birth of ebooks has given the new generation a more comfortable option of getting reading materials especially regarding books that best fit their interests. Behind the fact that ebooks are easier to find due to search engines on the internet, carrying them around is much easier compared to carrying a bundle of books that are most often than not making a great inconvenience for the students. Relatively, students become more interested in using ebooks in school because of the convenience in transport that it gives them. Imaginably, anyone would take the option of carrying one gadget compared to carrying several numbers of books that are seldom used in class. To respond to such concern by the readers in the public [may they be students or just casual readers], the authors of most books today make their written publications available on classic types of books and also on ebook forms (Clapham, 2000, 377). Compared to the ones appreciating classic forms of books [written; paper-based books], there has been a dramatic increase of those who better opt to get the reading copies in ebook forms. According to Paul Saenger’s (2001) reading entitled Space Between Words: The Origins of Silent Reading, people at present pick ebooks apart from physical reading materials due to three primary reasons.
One is the existence of determinable convenience on the part of the option of having the written readings in their own carry-on gadgets (Saenger, 2001, 22). Apart from it is the possibility of managing the reading materials in a more comfortable option (Saenger, 2001, 34). For instance, in physical books, highlighting the important information and putting bookmarks in the materials is essential. The same option is possible in ebooks as well, however, it is much easier to manage and save. For instance, several applications are available on the internet that allows ebook readers to manage their reading progress through their carry-on gadgets. These applications allow readers to highlight the information with several software programs that have such features. Marking the pages is also effective in making sure that the reading progress is noted accordingly. Reaching the pages that have been bookmarked is often easier to consider especially that several linkages could be customized with each specific reading. These tools make it easier for readers to become more effective in managing their progress in reading especially in the hope of retaining a common and effective bookmarking system that might not come as easy when it comes to managing actual physical book readings.
The third reason is the fact that ebooks could be read through controllable lighting options. One of the problems that readers have in reading actual physical books is the fact that when light is not present, reading becomes harder to accomplish. However, in the case of readers of ebooks, they have the option of controlling the light they use in exploring the materials they are in need of or are interested to read. Practically, such option makes it easier for the eyes to settle accordingly especially when it comes to determining a better condition of improving one’s way of reading (Sanger, 2001, 39).
Practically, these choices affect the literacy of the readers. It has been observed through time that with the existence of ebooks, people have become more interested in reading through several materials that become readily available to their access. With online connections, there are certain ebook applications that allow readers to easily connect to the internet when they seem to have a problem understanding a particular word. Making a distinct impact on how the readers understand the materials fully, the internet has allowed readers of ebooks to become more responsive to the words that they recognize in the materials they wish to read from.
Overall, the impact of the production and distribution of ebooks through the internet has made it easier for readers at present to become more engaged within the materials they choose to read. Practically, these options have made it easier, even for non-readers, better connected to their interests through readily available information in the internet that could be accessed through ebooks. Nevertheless, it could not be denied that even though ebooks are making a hit in the society today [especially among new age readers], the emergence of newly printed books remain effective and is considered one of the basic reasons that invoke the proper practices of good reading. Relatively, the feel of reading a book can never be replaced by ebook reading, in a way that even though some might see this practice less practical, readers who see physical printed books a necessary part of their interest in reading the information will remain loyal to reading the books although they might consider ebooks a good choice as well. No matter, it is not the reading material that matters when it comes to literacy, but the behavior that one has towards the act of reading; this is what will determine the capacity of one to become more engaged in his reading schedules accordingly.
Avrin, Leila (1991). Scribes, script, and books: the book arts from antiquity to the Renaissance. New York, New York: American Library Association; The British Library. p. 83.
Saenger, Paul (2001). Space Between Words: The Origins of Silent Reading. Stanford University Press
Patkus, Beth (2003). Assessing Preservation Needs, A Self-Survey Guide. Andover: Northeast Document Conservation Center.
Clapham, Michael. (2000). “Printing" in A History of Technology, Vol 2. From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution, edd. Charles Singer et al. p. 377.