Having finally beaten my unread bookshelf last year and read the assorted tomes that had been gathering dust for many a year, I’ve now taken to my Kindle with a gusto.
The problem is my roving eye finds it far too easy to browse e-books, and my thumbs find it far too easy to do a 1-click purchase, leaving my unread e-bookshelf twice as full as my unread bookshelf ever was.
Is this perhaps the achilles heel of e-books? It’s far too easy to buy them, while finding the time to read them is as hard as it ever was with paper books, and harder if–like me–you have a penchant for reading in the bath.
I find myself increasingly drawn to the Amazon Kindle. Perhaps it’s the lure of e-ink, which has me enthralled even though it gives off the feeling of being an anachronistic leftover from the 70s; perhaps it’s the impending deluge of e-literature, which promises so many marked changes from printed literature that it’s difficult to tell if any of the changes will ever actually transpire; and perhaps it’s just my consumerist desire for Yet Another Desirable Electronic Gadget (YADEG).
Whatever the source of my fascination, this morning it dawned on that, apart from being a proper noun as well a registered trade mark, the word kindle would also make for a nifty verb, especialy as there’s already a homonym you can use in relation to a real book but not an e-book.
– verb (used with flammable object)
1. to start (a fire); cause (a flame, blaze, etc.) to begin burning.
– verb (used with e-literature)
2. to read on YADEG.
As has been widely reported over the last few days, Amazon decided to delete copies of George Orwell’s Animal Farm and 1984 from users Kindle’s in response to a copyright violation from the e-books’ publisher.
Aside from raising all manner of questions about how much trust should readers have in their E-book suppliers, and how copyright should be managed in the digital world, it’s another prime example of the wonderous surveillance state we live in. Be warned, Big Brother Amazon is watching you!