Friday, February 15, 2013

The ebook debate

Of late, I have read numerous discussion threads on several different groups I follow regarding adding e-content, managing e-content, etc.  I have spent a long while tossing the idea back and forth should I spend the money buying items such as this or should I stick with print media.   I bought a popular series in ebook form and publicized it's existance.   Not one hit so far.  We added the e-content in October.  So my questioning the students has started.   I am learning more and more they prefer the traditional book.  I have lots of kids with kindles and e-readers but they play games more than read books.   I have some who told me they liked the book smell and the feel of pages flipping.   Others told me they prefer to research in a book since they can put tabs and flags in.   So I am a little torn.

I think eBooks are going to take on and do so quickly, but I am not sure how well my patrons will embrace it.   I am a traditional person, myself.  I read a lot of books, I have read them both on a device as well as in a book.  I like both mediums but I prefer paper. The smell, the feel, the lack of reflection from the sunlight. I am also one who is willing to try new things.  I think the online e-content is something to consider investing in, but my concern is the expense. Yes, e-content is cheaper, but, are the savings worth it?   My patrons are used to walking around the stacks looking for a title or telling one of the staff what they are looking for.   I teach them how to look on their own, but many are on a limited time budget and it's often faster to just walk to the section and show them.  Would they use the e-content if it was available to them?  The next question to ask, where do I get it?

There are so many places available that sell e-content.  Some of it is very valid and very beneficial to my student population, but deciding what I want to get is going to be a challenge.   Do I find content that accomodates primarily our 1:1 tools or do I search out things that can go on more devices.  That is my huge decision.   Any thoughts readers?  Do I take the plunge?

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