When people talk about the risks of not having print books anymore, I’m struck by how hard it is for humanity to assess risks accurately.

“It’s all fun and games until world civilization collapses and we have NO MORE BOOKS.”

The chance of civilization as we know it collapsing to the point of irretrievably losing all ebooks is low.

The risk of out-of-print books disappearing forever due to the slow, personal loss of every copy due to time and other damage is much higher.  You probably know of at least one book that you’ve lost due to flood damage, mold, etc., that you’ve been meaning to replace, but it’s not that easy to find a copy…

Out of print: someday, our grandkids will want to know what that means.  In a thousand years, it’s going to be the books that were digitized or digital in the first place that are still around, waiting to be read.

I feel like I should write a story just to go along with this post, but I haven’t yet, so instead, if you’ve liked this post, check out The Clockwork Alice.  It’s pretty meta and has some things to say about stories; that might scratch the itch…