Long Live Dead Trees

In two separate pieces I read this past weekend, I discovered that my preference for reading printed books is not quite the anomaly I once thought it was.

The first article was a Cognition blog post by Tom McQuaid entitled, “My Shelf, My Self”. In it, McQuaid talks about the Japanese word tsundoku:

Practicing tsundoku may seem like the habit of a hoarder. For me, though, keeping a collection of the unread and unconsumed—physical or digital—is an acknowledgment of how much I have yet to learn.

I am a tsundoku-er and I didn’t even know it. I have a stack of about six books that have sat on my nightstand for months. I have another stack of about five books on the floor next to my desk. All are reminders to me of the stuff I still have—and want, and need—to learn.

After reading McQuaid’s post, I stumbled upon “No, the Internet Has Not Killed the Printed Book. Most People Still Prefer Them.” by Daniel Victor for the New York Times.

Sixty-five percent of adults in the United States said they had read a printed book in the past year, the same percentage that said so in 2012.

I still cherish physical forms of media. I have a bookshelf filled to capacity with physical books, ranging in topics from the Web (naturally), non-fiction, and a little fiction. I have hundreds of CDs, and I don’t intend on slowing down on that collection, either. There’s just something about purchasing a physical object that makes it more appealing to me. Reading the inside jacket of a biography, or perusing the liner notes of an album. These all things that electronic forms of media just do a terrible job of replicating.