The questionnaires were filled out by the visitors of the Budapest International Book Week, on location, anonymously, between 24th and 27th April. Even though the sample was not on a national scale, the responses indicate interesting results and tendencies, as the analysis of the responses show. The research report was carried out by TÁRKI Social Research Institute Ltd.
The questionnaire included the following main topics: awareness and utilization of e-books and e-book reader devices, consumer decisions between the purchase of electronic or paper-based editions, availability of e-books and in case they are unavailable, the use of illegal sources.
The survey participants were mostly women (71%) and those with higher education (68%). Distribution by age groups was balanced, most of the respondents are in the 31-44(30%) and the 18-30(28%) age groups..
Dr. Miklós Bendzsel, Vice Chairman of the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office commented that „the survey results show that e-books are becoming a valid alternative for the reading public. While the 2013 consumer research report of the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office, Counterfeiting in Hungary shows that about one third of young people consume content from illegal sources, it also points out that on average 21 percent of consumers would pay for such content, if it was available for a more affordable price.”
The Chairman also emphasizes:„I find it absolutely necessary for the book trade and the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office take steps towards ensuring a real alternative to illegal use, to create legal market models and to raise awareness, through them decreasing the volume of grey usage. The illegally obtained fruit is not as sweet as the one legally bought, and as the poacher of the stolen fruit is punished, the illegal distributors of e-books must also be dealt with.”
According to Péter László Zentai, Director of the Hungarian Publishers and Booksellers Association: “as welcome news as it is to find that the young generation so susceptible to innovation is adopting the usage of e-books, and therefore the culture of reading is not suffering from its migration to the digital space, it is outrageous to face the fact that the – in principle, the most conscious – citizens, namely those holding a higher degree, are for the most part indifferent to the fact that some of their reading materials are obtained illegally. It is absolutely necessary to raise awareness to the fact that illegal downloading is stealing in the same sense shoplifting is. It is also just as necessary that the operators of such pirate sites are prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
Summary of the Survey Results