do books still matter?

“We’re just not going to be reading for text anymore,” said Saveri, the Institute for the Future researcher. “We’re going to be ‘reading’ for movies, graphics, images, digital stories, symbols,” she says. “You may say young people aren’t reading the classics, but 20 years from now, there might be some classic multimedia pieces with video, with hyperlinks. That’s the new edge of literacy.”

Saveri suggests parents blog with their kids, make a YouTube video, jump into the new media – and take books along. “We’ve got to get over our nostalgia,” she says. “Denying your child a rich media world is doing your child a disservice.”

Do books still matter?

(thank you Molly)

3 Comments leave a comment below

  1. You’re welcome. And I’m sending you and your beautiful family some very well-designed, but bright, blessings …

  2. Oh no- I hope books have a future! My degrees are in literature.

    Saveri seems to assume that there’s a one to one equivalent with media representations of books. That’s a very simplistic way to look at books. Books can encompass so much more than movies- which is why movie adaptations of books so often feel incomplete. Filmmakers still struggle with the limitations of film in representing certain types of narration and sensory observations.

    To move to a fully multi-media world is to stunt a whole approach to imaginative thinking that words alone can inspire.

    There are also concerns about how author’s intents are manipulated by the lenses through which they are retold. I shudder to think that the text Beowulf is judged by the recent film “retelling” which has only a vague acquaintance with the source text and its content.

    If books die, please bury me with them.

  3. I’m with Adrienne who makes such a great argument. I might add that books are far inexpensive, reusable, portable, wireless entertainment. It’d be a shame to always rely on electricity to cuddle up with a good book.

    Unfortunately, if enough parents buy the argument that text-only (print or electronic) books are outdated, there are a lot of kids out there that will never know what it’s like to mentally delve into a completely engrossing book without someone interpreting it and making it more “digestible” for them first.

    Happily, I don’t believe multimedia can exist without a source, which someone needs to be able to read and interpret without any pictures. Fewer people may choose to read text-only books at some point, but it’ll still be a necessary skill. Who knows? Maybe those of us who choose to do it will be wildly compensated… :)

    Fantastic post, T. I have to write a post for our new HD blog. I may use this…