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Russians opt for ebooks
January 17, 2013, 12:32 pm

[Getty Images]

The popularity of ebooks has increased significantly in Russia. [Getty Images]

The total amount of books and brochures published in 2012 decreased by 5 per cent while sales for ebooks at Russia’s largest online book shop, have tripled in the past year.

The number of printed copies has been falling for the past three years.

In 2012 the total amount of books and brochures published decreased by 5 per cent against the 2011 figure of 122,915, and the average number of printed copies fell by 8 per cent in the same period.

A growing demand for electronic books is the reason behind the slump in production of printed publications.

Cost and convenience are the most common factors behind the switch from printed to electronic books.

Although, the trend is mostly a feature in big cities where people have access to new technologies.

The situation is very different in villages and small towns.

The elderly population prefers the printed form and according to a poll conducted in 2010 by WCIOM, Russian Public Opinion Research Centre, 39 per cent of the respondents only new what an ebook was after the interview.

It is likely to be a smaller percentage now, but for many ebooks are still a novelty.

The change is seen most obviously on the metro where passengers can now be spotted with an ebook in their hand.

“It’s convenient. You don’t have to carry several books with you, you can chose what you want to read at the moment. And printed books are way too heavy, whereas ebooks are so much more convenient,” says Nikolay, a 20 year old student.

Another poll conducted by Romir said that 65 per cent of respondents say they buy fewer books now than they did five years ago – opting for ebooks instead.

Daria Chernyshova