Skip to main content

USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Press Release

< Return to the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll page


86 Percent of E-Reader Owners Still Read Books in Print

4 out of 5 Californians have read a book for pleasure in the last month.

Media Contacts:
Suzanne Wu at (213) 740-0252 or
Michelle Salzman at (213) 821-9311 or

LOS ANGELES — April 14, 2012 — Californians are omnivorous readers and take in books through both the printed page and handheld screens, according to results of the latest USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll.

A growing number of Californians own either a tablet or an e-reader such as a Kindle or Nook, and 87 percent of these technology adopters are very satisfied with their devices. Twenty-one percent of Californians own an e-reader.

But the results of the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll, which surveyed 1,500 voters statewide, show that in addition to reading books digitally, an overwhelming majority of these e-reader owners also read books in print: About 86 percent of people who own an e-reader split their time between digital devices and traditional print books, including 54 percent who said they still read books in print most of the time or always.

The poll results, coming days before the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books is expected to bring 150,000 book lovers to the University of Southern California campus — including iconic actress Julie Andrews and basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — are a confirmation that the book, in all its forms, is alive and well in the Golden State.

“When you experience the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC, our community’s enthusiasm for writing and writers is overwhelming, and these data tell us why,” said Catherine Quinlan, dean of the USC Libraries. “This poll shows that Californians are eager and devoted readers, that the written word is vibrant and enduring, and that paper and digital media work together in enriching the life of the mind.”

Californians also dedicate a significant amount of their leisure time to books, with two out of three adults (67 percent) saying they read for pleasure at least three hours a week, including 68 percent of Black respondents, 58 percent of Latinos and 51 percent of Asians. More than one in five Californians (22 percent), said they read more than ten hours a week “because they want to.”

Overall, 78 percent of Californians read at least a book a month in their free time, and more than one in four (27 percent) read at least a book a week, on average. Thirty-two percent of women in California and 21 percent of men read four or more books a month.

The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books will be held at USC on Saturday, April 21 and Sunday, April 22. For a full program schedule and public transportation routes to USC, visit

WEB SITE: /poll
TWITTER: @usclatpoll

About the USC Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences/Los Angeles Times Poll: The USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll is a series of statewide public opinion polls in California, designed to survey voter attitudes on a wide range of political, policy, social and cultural issues.

Conducted at regular intervals throughout the year, the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times Poll is one of the largest polls of registered voters in the state and has been widely cited, helping to inform the public and to encourage discourse on key political and policy issues.

About USC Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences: USC Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences is the heart of the university. The largest, oldest and most diverse of USC's 19 schools, USC Dornsife is composed of more than 30 academic departments and dozens of research centers and institutes. USC Dornsife is home to approximately 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students and more than 750 faculty members with expertise across the humanities, social sciences and sciences.

About the Los Angeles Times:
The Los Angeles Times is the largest metropolitan daily newspaper in the country, with a daily readership of 2 million and 3 million on Sunday, and a combined print and interactive local weekly audience of 4.5 million. The fast-growing draws over 10 million unique visitors monthly.