So… about a month ago I bought the Amazon Kindle 2. Its their e-book reader, which they’ve been touting on their home page for what seems like the last year or so.
Well, I love it. I have about an hour commute to work everyday and I will use my Kindle to read the day’s Washington Post (just canceled my subscription to the dead tree edition today) or a book. The best part is, when you’re on the subway, you can read the newspaper with one hand, while using the other hand to clutch a pole or rail if need be.
The only thing I don’t like about the Kindle is that it’s not good at sharing. (Remember when your mother would tell you that you needed to share that toy with your sibling?) Well the Kindle just can’t.
As I mentioned in my last post, I’m currently about half way through Tara Hunt’s book The Whuffie Factor and it’s great. I’m really enjoying the book. I’m enjoying the book so much that I have recommended it to a few friends.
Naturally, my friend asked me “Can I borrow your copy?” I’m like… oh crap. The book is on my Kindle. There is nothing that i can give my friend. I can’t get the e-book off my Kindle. I’m not giving her my Kindle so that I she could read the book.
Do I love the book enough that I’ll buy a physical copy that I can use to loan to friends? Maybe. I don’t feel like I should have to though.
I have had a similar experience when I’ve found a cool article in the Kindle edition of the Washington Post that I’ve wanted to share. What do I do? I can’t send them the article through the Kindle, even though the device does have an Internet connection. I’d have to go to the Web, find the article, and send that URL. That’s a pain. I usually just end up forgetting about it.
The lesson is that a good chunk of media consumption is no longer done in private. It’s done within a community or a network of people who want to share that content amongst themselves. New devices that are created should take this into consideration. Creating these great experiences that have these monsterous walls that prevent the content from getting out doesn’t work any more.