At PaidContent, Laura Hazard Owen reports on the recent Verso study that showed over half of book buyers are “not at all likely” to buy an e-reader in the next year, up from 2009. Owen talked to representatives from Verso who suggested that, to the resistant, e-readers aren’t yet better enough than print books to suit them, they don’t like reading off of screens, and they like being able to rummage through books in physical stores to find new books they might never otherwise have considered.
She also notes that teenagers lag behind other age groups in e-book adoption, pointing to a Bowker’s presentation that said teens like to do things socially and DRMed e-books are too restricted for the ways teens want to use them.
Nobody seems to have touched on one relatively simple explanation for why the percentage of e-book resistant seems to be growing—it’s that more and more people already have an e-reader, so the number of people who don’t want them makes up a greater proportion of those who don’t have them yet.
As much as we like to make fun of “luddites” who hate e-books, the survey shows there are a significant chunk of people who feel that way, and they’ll be with us (and influencing the book sales market) for a long time,