Books as a Self-Contained Physical Object Given as a Gift

Source: O’Reilly Radar, Aug 2008

with books it is possible to have a completely self-contained physical object that you can hand to anyone anywhere in the world, and that will have lasting value to them over a period of many years. In a situation like that, a book is more like a vase or a clock-radio: The physical nature of the gift is as important as what specifically it is. And gift giving is a huge market.

On my recent trip to Japan and China, on which I talked to many people about my ebook, I didn’t hand out a single copy of the ebook. Instead I took several dozen copies of my print book to give away to reporters and publishing executives, who were always delighted to get such a lovely physical object. A gift code for a copy of the ebook is really just not the same thing.

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