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Your E-Book Reader Isn’t Going To Last Forever – Is Your Library Backed-Up?

The other day, I was boxing up some books and moving them to another room, I have far too many books, and the bookshelves are taking over my entire house. It’s time that I dedicate a room just for this purpose and call it my personal library if you will. I was joking with a friend who came over to visit that it is as if I’m collecting dinosaur bones, as if this is a Museum.

You see, in the future we may not be printing our books, and while we may be saving trees and putting electronic books into e-readers, it still may not be the same. Let’s go ahead and talk about the longevity of a paper book, and the reality that you could lose your electronic versions, and then be left without.

Now so I can make my point, I’d like to ask you a personal question. What is the longest computer, cell phone, personal assistant device (PDA), or electronic storage device that you have owned? I bet the answer is not more than five years. Okay so, today you have an e-reader and thus, there is a good chance in five years you will no longer own it. If all of the books that you put onto that e-reader disappear when the device breaks or you cannot reload them onto a different device or multiple devices to store them, then your entire library could be lost.

If you are wise and you might take up one of the cloud computing offers so you can have your entire library stored in the cloud. But what if the cloud goes down, the company goes bankrupt, it gets hacked, bomb, or there’s a natural disaster? Worse, what if you fall on hard times and you don’t pay the monthly fee, in that case you won’t be able to get to your e-book digital library, when that device they are on goes kaput. If you have a ton of books, and I’m literally talking about 2000 pounds, so it really is a ton, they may be bulky, and take up quite a bit of space, but you will always have them. The books will outlast your lifetime, unless your home is flooded, burns to the ground, or is vacuumed up by a tornado.

Indeed, I think you are starting to understand my point here, and I wonder how come so many people are ditching their physical libraries for e-readers without taking all this into consideration. It is possible that the Internet may one day be unsafe to use due to hackers, or the infrastructure is not maintained properly, therefore you can’t access things online like you can today. What is most likely is that your personal tech devices will become obsolete, along with all the various ways in which you retrieve the information and store it. Just look at the past. Please consider all this and think on it.

Save Paper – Visit the Library Instead of Buying Books

WHAT: Did you know that the book publishing industry in the US uses 16 million tons of paper every year? They estimate that about 20 trees yield one ton of paper – that means the industry consumes 32 million trees per year! And that doesn’t include the magazine and newspaper industry! So instead of buying books, CDs, DVDs and even magazines that you barely use, or use only once, check materials in your neighborhood library. If you haven’t been to your local library, you’re missing out on a lot. Most libraries today have, in addition to lots and lots of books, extensive video and music collections as well. Many libraries have their catalogs on the internet and you can pick out books and request them on-line!

WHY: Libraries are great because you can get books without spending so much and you reduce the demand for cutting down trees to make books. In libraries, you can also choose from a wide selection of magazines, newspapers, videos, and audio books. To further green your trip to the library, take public transportation. Or, you can even stay home and download the library’s e-books or audio books for free! Aside from being able to save money, by opting to go to the library you help save energy from the production of books, eliminate pollution and save fuel caused by shipping books and more!

HOW:
• Check your telephone book to find your local library.
• Get a free library card at your local library. While you’re at it, get a library card for your children as well.
• Ask for a library tour! Familiarize yourself with the book sections so the next time you go back, you know where to find what you want to read.
• Ask for book recommendations from the librarian. They’d be happy to help.
• Ask about activities such as author discussions and story times. Find time to attend some of these events.
• Check the library’s valuable resources — books on tape or CDs, Internet access, movies and educational DVDs, games, homework help, and more.
• Ask about summer reading programs. This is a fun way to keep kids reading through the summer!

TIP: Check if your local library sells used/donated books or magazines. You might be surprised at what treasures you’ll find!