Are bookstores dying because of online stores and social media?

#1

I recently walked into a bookstore in Lucknow, India. It looked a fairly small and old but I was amazed to see all types of books, from classics of George Orwell to the recently published. I always thought that because of social media like Facebook, Instagram etc., number of readers and writers are declining. On the top of that, the market of physical bookstores seems to be declining because of online stores who provide huge discounts.

Out of curiosity I asked the owner of that bookstore, about how long is he running the bookstore and how is his business growing. He told me that he is running the bookstore from 42 years and business is still going well. Surely, there is some affect because of growing internet and online stores but that is acceptable and manageable. He mentioned that people less active on social media appears not to exists, as those people spend time being engrossed in books and writing. But there are plenty of book lovers out there.

When we talk about the online stores, he said, it is fine that some people look for discounts. But all avid readers love to walk and spend time in bookstores to explore. Many of those can’t control the zeal to buy something right away rather than waiting for delivery of book ordered online. On another hand, internet has given people more opportunities to learn writing, contact publishers. In some ways, market has grown as well.

I was amazed and inspired about this information I got from him.

What is your opinion on this? Do you feel that things are growing or declining?

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#2

Well, it totally depends on what kind of a person you are! Someone who loves to read but is lazy enough to explore the book market , would prefer ordering online & getting a book by just a click of a button. Whereas , a person who is fond of visiting liabraries, book stalls, going through various books & then deciding what to buy, would surely not prefer buying online.
However, I believe online purchases can never give a book lover the feel of selecting from thousands of books in a store and then reading it with a cup of coffee in a book cafe.

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