If, for the philosopher, existence precedes essence, and choice precedes being, for the bibliophile, the tactile always precedes the virtual. It is no wonder that people print out emails that are important to them. The physicality of paper is a more certain hedge against mortality than pixels on a screen.
The presence of a beloved book in our hands has no virtual equivalent. It should not come as a surprise, according to one study, that depression levels rise with the more time people spend chatting online. continue reading: Now, We're Just Like Them By William H. Wisner — August 15, 2006
See my article on Virtual librarianship