Hard Cover vs. Hard Drive Essay

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Hard Cover vs. Hard Drive

Will Electronic Publications Ever Replace the Book?

At one time our world was strictly an oral culture. We recited stories, kept records stored in our memories. When writing was invented did we suddenly stop speaking to one another or remembering facts? Of course not. At any given moment we can recall, from memory, names, dates, and places that we have committed to memory. When the printing press was invented, did we stop writing by hand? Again, no. So, why would we stop reading a book just because we have access to the World Wide Web? All previous information technologies of language, rhetoric, writing and printing are technological in themselves (Landow 218). These technologies—writing, speaking,
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For these books the Internet makes life much easier. If, however, what you want is a story: an engaging novel with plot twists, vivid characters, and a story you can relate to, you may be reluctant to jump on your computer—I understand. Stories such as these are meant to be read while curled up on a chair sitting next to a roaring fireplace, but who has the time for that anymore? The Internet novel could very well become the book on the go. Therefore, anywhere that you have Internet access, which is growing by the minute, you have your book their waiting for you.

Electronic publications have not only increased access to text, they have even created new ways to view and interpret literature, not to mention new ways to write it (Landow 223). Some would argue that electronic publications leave little room for the ‘true author’—the Hemingway’s and Thoreau’s that write in secluded cabins, scratching novels on loose paper—but I disagree. Internet authors, while more common that those published in book form, may be in fact be held to a higher standard. The true author is not leaving the picture, as some fear, but is now expected to continuously paint it. "Authors are evolving into constant suppliers of new content; they are reporters and advisors as much as they are writers (Pang 349).

The downside to amateur web publications is that the works may not be as well edited as those found in book form, but more often than not the
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