Books

More than half of Italians don’t read books

«The issue is not to read or not a gossip magazine, but to read at all…».

In 2012, only 46% of Italians read at least one book in the whole year: 51.9% of women and 39.7% of men. A percentage that, although increased compared to 2011, when it stood at 45.3%, is very low in comparison to other European countries: for example, 61.4% in Spain, 70% in France and 82% in Germany.

To be noted that the Italian average of readers has never concerned half of the population and decreases if we take away the citizens who read fewer than three books in 12 months. This is what emerges from the “1st Report on the promotion of reading in Italy“, published by the “Book Forum” (“Forum del libro“), on behalf of the Department for Information and Publishing of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers.

One Italian out of two does not read at all. And can we consider a “reader” a person that reads just one book per year?
Also on the newspapers’ front the news are not good at all. 52% of the Italians say that they read a newspaper once a week, while just 36% read them five times a week. Web plays a big role, but does not really change the socio-economic level and behavior of the readers.

At least, technology seems to be of some help. Italians spent € 131 million in 2011 to buy an e-book reader (16 million in 2010) and 472 million (vs 21 million) for tablets, while the book title grew to 31,416 at the half of 2012 (from 1,619 in 2009).

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