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The Rise of E-Reading

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Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, will share findings from a new report on e-book lending at libraries. He will also discuss other research about the rise of e-books, their impact on people’s reading habits, and the way that library patrons are hoping to avail themselves of e-book borrowing. Finally, he will explore general reading trends and describe the next steps in the Project’s ongoing research about the evolving role of libraries.

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The Rise of E-Reading

  1. The rise of e-reading and the changing role of public libraries Lee Rainie Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project Presented to: American Library Association June 24, 2012
  2. • Part of the Pew Research Center, a non-partisan “fact tank” in Washington, DC • Studies how people use digital technologies • Does not promote specific technologies or make policy recommendations • Research is primarily based on nationally representative pewinternet.org telephone surveys of adults
  3. About our libraries research • Goal: To study the changing role of public libraries and library users in the digital age • Funded by a three-year grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation libraries.pewinternet.org
  4. RESEARCH TIMELINE Stage I (August 2011-July 2012) Libraries + new technologies • The Rise of E-Reading http://libraries.pewinternet.org/2012/04/04/the- rise-of-e-reading/ – Includes special focus on reading habits of people who own e-readers or tablet computers • E-book borrowing and libraries http://libraries.pewinternet.org/2012/06/22/libraries-patrons-and-e- books/ – Includes stories and quotes from online surveys of library staff and patrons • Library use in different community types - urban, suburban, rural • Younger readers, libraries, and books
  5. RESEARCH TIMELINE Stage II (June-December 2012) The changing world of library services • The evolving role of libraries in communities – New library services – People’s expectations of libraries – “The library of the future” • The role of libraries in the life of special populations – Lower-income users, minorities, rural residents, senior citizens
  6. RESEARCH TIMELINE Stage III (October 2012–April 2013) A typology of who does – and does not – use libraries • A “library user” typology – Different user “types” based on: • What their local libraries are like • How they use libraries • Attitudes about libraries in general • An updated, in-depth portrait of young library users
  7. The prequel … a triple revolution changes the world of libraries
  8. Digital Revolution 1 Internet (82%) and Broadband at home (66%) Home broadband Home dial-up 80% 70% 71% 60% 50% 66% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% June April March March April March March March April April May May August Jan 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2011 2012
  9. Networked creators are everywhere (two-thirds of adults; three-quarters of teens) • 66% of internet users are social networking site users • 59% of cell owners share photos or videos • 37% of internet users contribute rankings and ratings • 33% create content tags • 30% share personal creations • 26% post comments on sites and blogs • 15% have personal website • 15% are content remixers • 16% use Twitter • 14% are bloggers • Of smartphone owners: 18% location services 74% maps/directions/local awareness
  10. Big challenge for libraries Atoms bits Collections are disrupted
  11. Mobile phones – 88% of adults 331.6 Total U.S. population: 315.5 million 2011
  12. Changes in smartphone ownership 80% May 2011 February 2012 60% 46% 48% 41% 40% 35% 20% 17% 12% 0% Smartphone Other cell phone No cell phone
  13. Apps – 50% of adults Sept 2009 May 2010 August 2011 100% 80% 60% 50* 40% 38* 38 43* 43 29* 22% 20% 0% Download apps to their Have preloaded apps on Total who have apps on phone their phone phone
  14. Big challenge for libraries People come to us We go to people The library as place becomes the library as placeless resource
  15. Digital Revolution 3 Social networking – 52% of all adults 100% % of internet users 86% 85% 80% 83% 70% 71% 76% 67% 61% 60% 52% 48% 49% 47% 51% 40% 35% 25% 33% 25% 26% 20% 9% 8% 11% 13% 7% 7% 4% 0% 6% 1% 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 18-29 30-49 50-64 65+
  16. Big challenge for libraries Expertise and influence emerges in networks and algorithms Share the stage with amateur experts
  17. Then along comes e-book reading
  18. Rise of e-reading devices 29% of adults own at least one device Ebook reader Tablet 25% 20% 19% 15% 12% 10% 10% 10% 9% 8% 6% 5% 5% 5% 4% 4% 3% 3% 2% 0% Apr-09 Sep-09 May-10 Sep-10 Nov-10 May-11 Aug-11 Dec-11 Jan-12
  19. First report: The rise of e-reading 21% of American adults read an e-book in the last year 68% read a print book 11% listened to an audiobook 30% of e-content readers say they are reading more now
  20. The book format used by readers on any given day is changing % of adult book readers (age 18+) using this format on an average day, as of June 2010 and December 2011 100% 95% 90% 84% 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 15% 10% 4% 4% 4% 0% Print book E-book Audiobook Jun-10 Dec-11
  21. Who are the readers behind the screens? Readers of e-books are more likely than other readers to be: • Under age 50 • College educated • Living in households earning $50K+ Other key characteristics: • They read more books, more often, and for a wider range of reasons • More likely to buy than borrow
  22. How e-readers read their e-books % of e-book readers who read an e-book in the past 12 months on these devices 50% 40% 42% 41% 30% 29% 20% 23% 10% 0% On a cell phone On a computer On an e-book On a tablet reader computer
  23. How device owners read their e-books % of owners of each device who read e-books on that device 100% 90% 93% 80% 81% 70% 60% 50% 40% 46% 30% 20% 29% 10% 0% On a cell On a desktop or On an e-reader* On a tablet* phone* laptop* * = among people who own that device
  24. What kind of e-reader do you own? % of American adult e-reader owners age 18+ who own each type of e-book reader Kobo Other 3% Reader 1% Pandigital 2% Don’t Sony Reader know 2% 9% Nook 22% Kindle 62%
  25. What kind of tablet computer do you own? % of American adult tablet owners age 18+ who own each type of tablet computer Don’t know 6% Motorola Nook Xoom 1% Color HP 1% Touchpad Other 11% 2% Samsung Galaxy 5% iPad 61% Kindle Fire 14%
  26. More owners in the future 13% of non-owners say 18% of non-owners say they plan to buy an e- they plan to buy a book reader at some tablet at some point in point in the future the future Device innovations and price competition could change the market and drive more to these devices
  27. What is the main reason you do not currently have an e-reader? % of American adults age 16+ who do not own an e-book reader, as of December 2011 Just don't need one/don’t want one 24% Cost/can’t afford it 19 Prefer books/print 16 Don’t read/no time to read 10 Don’t know what an e-reader is 5 Don’t want to learn tech/don’t know how to use it 4 Have enough other devices/use other devices 3 Plan to get one/waiting for better features 3 Have iPad/tablet 3 Lack of time in general 2 I’m too old 2 Vision/health problems <1 Other 3 Don’t know/refused 5 Dec. 2011 results are from a survey of 2,986 people age 16 and older conducted November 16-December 21, 2011. The survey was conducted in English and Spanish and on landline and call phones. The margin of error is +/- 2 percentage points. N for number of non-owners of e-reading devices=2,290.
  28. What is the main reason you do not currently have a tablet computer? % of American adults age 16+ who do not own a tablet computer, as of December 2011 Just don't need one/don’t want one 35% Cost/can’t afford it 25 Have enough devices/happy with current devices 20 Don’t want to learn tech/don’t know how to use it 7 Don’t know what a tablet computer is 2 Plan to get one/waiting for better features 2 I’m too old 2 Lack of time in general 1 Don’t read/no time to read <1 Vision/health problems <1 Prefer books/print <1 Prefer to use library <1 Other 2 Don’t know/refused 3 Dec. 2011 results are from a survey of 2,986 people age 16 and older conducted November 16-December 21, 2011. The survey was conducted in English and Spanish and on landline and call phones. The margin of error is +/- 2 percentage points. N for number of non-owners of e-reading devices=2,290.
  29. Which is better for these purposes, a printed book or an e-book? % of Americans 16+ who have read both e-books and print books in the last 12 months Printed books E-books 100% 81% 83% 80% 73% 69% 60% 53% 43% 45% 40% 35% 25% 19% 20% 13% 9% 0% Reading with a Sharing books Reading books in Having a wide Reading while Being able to get child with other bed selection to traveling or a book quickly people choose from commuting
  30. Reading pleasures by the number • 26% of those who had read a book in the past 12 months said that what they enjoyed most was learning, gaining knowledge, and discovering information. • 15% cited the pleasures of escaping reality, becoming immersed in another world, and the enjoyment they got from using their imaginations. • 12% said they liked the entertainment value of reading, the drama of good stories, the suspense of watching a good plot unfold. • 12% said they enjoyed relaxing while reading and having quiet time. • 6% liked the variety of topics • 4% said they enjoy finding spiritual enrichment , expanding worldview • 3% said they like being mentally challenged by books. • 2% cited the physical properties of books
  31. When you want to read a particular e-book, where do you look first? % of readers of e-books age 16+, as of December 2011 80% 75% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 12% 10% 5% 5% 0% At an online At your public library Someplace else Don’t know bookstore/website
  32. Second report: E-book borrowing 12% of e-book readers (4% of general pop.) have borrowed e-book from library in last year 62% of non-borrowers don’t know it is possible to do so from library Non-borrowers are open to coaching/tech support Borrowing is a sometimes thing Borrowers are buyers, too
  33. 62% of non-borrowers don’t know about e-borrowing option • 58% of all library card holders do not know. • 55% of all those who say the library is “very important” to them do not know. • 53% of all tablet computer owners do not know. • 48% of all owners of e-book reading devices do not know. • 47% of all those who read an e-book in the past year do not know.
  34. How is selection? % of e-book borrowers Excellent Very good Good Fair Poor Don’t know 16 18 32 23 4 8 0 20 40 60 80 100
  35. Problems with borrowing process % of e-borrowers Yes No Don’t know It was not compatible 18% 80% 3% with your e-reader There was a waiting list 52% 46% 3% The library did not carry it 56% 39% 5% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
  36. Open to library coaching/tech support % of non-borrowers Very likely Somewhat likely Not too likely Not at all likely Classes or instruction on how to use handheld reading devices like 11 21 19 47 e-readers & tablet computers Classes on how to download library e-books to handheld devices 12 20 19 47 E-book readers already loaded with the book you want to read 18 28 15 37 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
  37. Where people get recommendations Library card holder No card 100% 80% 75% 60% 51% 40% 38% 28% 28% 28% 20% 16% 7% 0% Family, friends, Online bookstore/ Bookstore staff A librarian/ co-workers website library website
  38. E-book reader acquisition preference Library card holder No card 80% 76% 70% 60% 55% 50% 40% 36% 30% 20% 18% 10% 0% Purchase own copy Borrow
  39. Last book you read? Library card holder No card 60% 50% 50% 47% 40% 30% 29% 20% 20% 20% 14% 12% 10% 4% 0% Purchased it Borrowed from Borrowed from Some other way family/friend library
  40. Library card holders vs. fans 58% ages 16+ are card holders 65% ages 16+ say “important” • Women • Women • Whites • African-Americans • Higher HH income • Hispanics • Higher educational • Lower HH income attainment • Educ. attainment is • Non-rural less predictive • Parents of minors • Non-rural • Parents of minors
  41. Library users and uses • Borrow printed books: 35% of entire population or 48% of all those who read a print book in past year --- Women • Access historical documents or archives or genealogical records: 25% --- African-Americans • Access specialized databases such as legal or public records: 22% --- African-Americans • Get research help from a librarian: 20% --- African-Americans • Access or borrow magazines or journals: 15% --- African-Americans • Access or borrow newspapers: 14% --- African-Americans • Borrow audiobooks: 4% or 38% of all those who listened to audiobook in past year. • Borrow e-books: 2%-4% or 12% of all those who read an e-book in past year.
  42. 10 takeaways for librarians 1. E-reading is taking off because e- reading gadgets are taking off 2. The gadget doesn’t make the reader, but it may change the reader 3. E-book readers are reading omnivores (and probably influencers) 4. E-book readers are not platform snobs AND they like different platforms for different purposes 5. Library users are not always the same as library fans
  43. 10 takeaways for librarians 6. E-book borrowing has foothold – and whopping upside 7. Librarians have a gigantic public education and marketing opportunity – people want to learn and know about this new world 8. Library users are book buyers 9. Library borrowing patterns are changing 10. Collections are changing
  44. The defining questions of the digital age • The Theodore Levitt question: • What business am I in? • The Soren Kierkegaard business strategy questions: • What’s the franchise? • What’s the commodity?
  45. Be not afraid
  46. Thank you! Lee Rainie Email: lrainie@pewinternet.org Twitter: @Lrainie Kathryn Zickuhr Email: kzickuhr@pewinternet.org Twitter: @kzickuhr Mary Madden Email: mmadden@pewinternet.org Twitter: @mary_madden
  • BrandiHernandez7

    Nov. 23, 2021
  • libraryviews

    Oct. 20, 2012
  • pearl2011

    Jun. 29, 2012
  • biblioupm

    Jun. 25, 2012

Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, will share findings from a new report on e-book lending at libraries. He will also discuss other research about the rise of e-books, their impact on people’s reading habits, and the way that library patrons are hoping to avail themselves of e-book borrowing. Finally, he will explore general reading trends and describe the next steps in the Project’s ongoing research about the evolving role of libraries.

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