Skip to content

Poll Reminder: Digital Readers, Online readers . . .?

Here’s a reminder of the summer poll I’m conducting on this blog. I would love to have some more participation so go to the sidebar and cast your opinion for the single question: What should we call readers who read digitally to distinguish them from print readers?

Here are the interim results so far:

Yep! You’re reading that right. The highest ranking name/label so far is ‘reader’ and that’s a write-in. Yes, this is from a research based profession who are suggesting that we distinguish between readers of print and digital in professional conversations and future research by calling both behaviours by the same name. That’s a little like professional musicians calling electric guitars and acoustic guitars just guitars when they ask the roadies to pass the guitar. I’m assuming that most of these responses are meant to be humourous / ironic. 😉 Anyway, there’s still time to cast a vote.

Original Post:

What do/should we call people who read the e-versions of books?

This is one of those retronyms. When you change the language for something you have to fix the old world. For example – electric guitars necessitated the clarification acoustic guitars. Dial telephones were needed when we had to distinguish them from pushbutton phones.

Anyway, we probably call folks, in professional conversations and research, who read print, print readers. “Paper” reader seems awkward and I can’t think of another, better term. But, then what do we call readers when they’re reading the e-version and we need to distiguish them for research and reporting purposes? And yes I know most readers will be hybrid readers for the foreseeable future.

online readers?
digital readers?
e-readers? (too close to the device?)
e-book readers?
non-print readers (confused with non-readers?)
paperless readers?
mobile readers? (is it different?)
Are news, periodical, report, website, and book reading different?

So check out the poll on the side of my blog here and fill out the simple one questions survey.

Take the poll!

Anyway, there’s a little recent French news market research on this topic:

The New Faces of Digital Readers

In France:
“Respondents declare spending 37 minutes a day on digital publications as opposed to 22 minutes a day on print press.”
“51% of the respondents prefer web sites, 31% go for electronic editions, and 17% use applications.”
“Mid-morning breaks constitute the first of two prime times during which web consultation is favored by most users (36% of respondents), while digital editions and apps account each for 21-22% (apps are doing quite well at lunch time). The second prime time occurs in the evening, after work, when use is evenly distributed between devices.”
“As for the tablets, 56% of their use involves reading the branded press; that’s behind internet usage (77%), email (66%), or watching videos (62%).”


Posted on: July 26, 2011, 11:46 am Category: Uncategorized