BookNet Canada Survey: Print Books Steady, Audiobooks Up

Among Canadian adults who read a book last year, 90% said they had read a print book, the same percentage as in 2016, according to BookNet's annual survey examining how Canadians are spending their leisure time. Audiobook listening (26%) was up slightly, while the number of people who read an e-book last year (48%) dropped slightly.

The survey, which is conducted each winter, asked 750 respondents if they had read or listened to a book in the previous year (82% said they had) and which formats they used. Half of Canadian readers discover the books they read or buy through word of mouth, while 38% cited browsing online and 38% a physical store (38%). Social media and public libraries were mentioned by 30% of respondents.

In 2017, most readers (44%) said the number of books they had read/listened to in the past year was close to the year previous, but 38% indicated an increase. This was a 5% jump over the previous year. Also, those reporting that their reading has decreased from the previous year was down by 3% from 20% to 17%.

For leisure activities overall, the top five choices were browsing the internet (33%), spending time with family (32%), watching TV (31%), watching a movie (23%) and reading (22%). This is similar to results from the last three years.

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