Today I’d like to write about another subject that is circling my mind for a while already:
my the eternal struggle with it.
Don’t get me wrong, I love ebooks. They are a great thing, easy to access from everywhere and more than practical when you are traveling a lot (not to mention about the self-publishing option)…BUT…yeah, there it is, the huge BUT.
Everyone who knows a little about ebooks, knows that you are just getting a user right when buying an ebook. So you, who bought it is the only one allowed to read it. You are,
theoretically, not allowed to give it to your sister to read it. Your mom, best friend, dog and Grandfather can’t read it either.
I surely understand the reasons, why that is so, to a certain extent. Since it’s electronically, it would be send from you to your best friend to her sister and to her mother in law, so it makes sense that you are theoretically (in practice it may be a whole other chapter) not allowed to do so.
But what bothers me a little is the price. Somehow I feel…betrayed if I spent 10€ or 12€ on an ebook and don’t even get a real tangible copy of it that I can’t borrow my friends, that I can’t put real book tags in, or can’t really highlight (I know that readers have the option for both, book tags and highlighting but it’s still not the same!), or can ripped pages out (I’d never do that; that was an assumption!), or smash or throw around, and so on. I guess you know what I mean.
You have this copy on your kindle (or in your kindle app), in your ibooks, on you nook or whatever reader you may use, but you don’t have an actual book as such.
I know that the pricing of ebooks has a lot to do with the taxation of the respective country and that it’s often not the author who makes the price, but much more their publishing houses, but I think it’s ridiculous to spend just as much (or even more!) on an ebook than on a normal paperback. Generally it’s said that an ebook is around 20% less than the hardcover price. So if we have a HC book for 20€, its ebook price would roughly be around 16€…so paying between 10€ and 12€ seems generally okay but not everyone buys hardcover books. Personally I prefer paperbacks, since I find the more comfortable to read.
With all the understanding of paying the authors work, their agent and the people involved in publishing, the question of ‘Why are they still so freaking “expensive”‘ remains.
But at the end it’s important that we enjoy reading and the we do buy regular books once in a while, best in a small local store (or smaller chain), even if it’s more expensive. It’s really difficult for these shops to survive nowadays…
Of course not all ebooks are as expensive as I took as an example earlier. I know there are many sales and offers, deals and even free books, I love that and that’s when I usually buy ebooks. I was mainly referring to newly published books!