When the Kindle and others electronic readers came on the market, everybody was wondering what would happen of the book as we know it. Some said the e-reader would never replace that warm feeling when we first open a new book, that dry smell drifting from the pages and this great feeling… when we cut our fingers with the pages! But, according to E-Ink Holdings marketing officer, sales are tripling every year. And while people seems to have forgotten about this now old-fahion way of reading, prefering their portable devices, we can wonder about the magazine and it’s future.
Today’s life pace is slightly faster than the last decade, leading us to jam our leisure in the little spare time we have left. For fellow users of public transport, the reading in the bus has become a custom. As it saves place, is lighter in weight and can contain a great amount of books, the device is an interesting choice but is still, not essential. The electronic reader, even if mostly used recreationaly, can somehow be a great use for students. Several free applications can facilitate considerably the searches in the books, it also reassembles together all highlighted paragraphs, reuniting them for an easier and more fluid reading.
As for journals, the answer comes by itself with the existence of Twitter. The journal can often seem past due when news were already covered online, several hours ago, by professional journalists. Those events happen in real time and Internet gives the public the instrument to know what is happening when it is happening. In a more useful format, intelligent phones, tablettes and even computers offers a large amount of different sources and useful tools, such as Google News, which reunites every news offered free online in one page.
But, when it comes to a magazine, I am still to convince. For instance, fashion bloggers are tweeting live from fashion weeks, giving us all the details when they see it but, the fast pace of the media does not replace the reading of the magazine, which offers a more thoughtful look on the clothes. And, as a book is a thrilling entertainment, I am not yet convince I would like to read my Vogue copy in the crowded buses, under a man’s armpit. Magazines are more, to me, of a slow reading, relaxing, soft and quiet. Although I can see the attraction with high quality pictures, I still do not see the need to migrate from paper to electronic as paper seems more comfortable.
However, I see for magazines, whether they are online or printed, a peaceful cohabitation between both. One continuing to fulfill fashionistas with tasteful clothes and unaffordable dreams while a new genre of publication takes place on the web. I only hope redactors will explore new ways to relate to the readers as Internet gives us a bunch of new possibilities.
Text by Ruby-Maude Rioux