Aussies use Libraries more than Bookstores

The ACA released a fact sheet outlining the results of research conducted each year from 2008 to 2012 with readers who identified as reading for pleasure over those 3 years.  Part of the Get Reading! Campaign, the information shows some interesting trends in how and what Australians are reading.

Mayor Mark Troy says he was very interested in many of the results, especially those showing that reading is still very popular despite the availability of other forms of entertainment.  “I’m not surprised at this result!” he acknowledged, “I know how popular reading is in the Shire, and it seems our community reflects the reading habits of the rest of the country.”

Key findings of the research include:

How much are we reading?

  • What we are reading and how we read has changed in the past few years, but the amount we are reading has stayed the same.
  • Most people surveyed read at least once a week.
  • Readings using portable reading devices spend more time reading than other readers.

What are we reading?

  • In 2012, over half of the people surveyed read a fiction book and 37 percent read a non-fiction book.
  • Plays and histories have increased in popularity since 2010.

How do we access reading material?

  • More readers borrow from libraries and use digital technology for reading in 2012 than in 2010.

Mayor Mark Troy was particularly impressed by the finding that over 8 readers in every 10 agreed that reading offers them something that TV and computers do not.  “It’s great to see that getting engrossed in a good book hasn’t been replaced by the square screen,” he said, “although these days many readers are accessing ebooks, so they get the best of both worlds.”

“Public Library Staff work hard to make good reading materials available for our communities, and research such as this shows it pays off,” he added.  “Not only does it mean that we still enjoy reading, but library users of all ages are better informed and have improved literacy skills.”


AustCo Reading Trends Fact Sheet 2013 (PDF)