76% of readers buy books based on cover design

Updated 19 March 2016

76% of readers buy books based on cover design

RIYADH: Seventy six percent of readers purchase books because of attractive cover designs, and not necessarily the content, according to a recent survey.
The survey was conducted by Waseema Mohammed Al-Ashiwi, a researcher and professor of design at Princess Nora bint Abdulrahman University.
She presented her findings during a forum, organized by the cultural committee for the Riyadh International Book Fair.
According to Al-Ashiwi, her survey revealed they were attracted to the book cover, particularly those with interesting designs and clear portrayal of the content.
The title of the book, many respondents said, requires careful thought to make it more distinct and ensure it matches both the content and the design, she said.
Meanwhile, Khaled Al-Zahrani, a visitor at the book fair, said that most people still seemed to prefer the printed word. “Many prefer the old-fashioned paper books, rather than e-books,” he said.
He said that the apparent advantages of e-books have failed to convince lovers of paper books.

“Paper books still have their place in the hearts of intellectuals and book lovers despite the proliferation of e-books and other reading fare,” he said.
This is despite these books being expensive and heavy to carry, especially when traveling.
He pointed to a little girl reading a paper book as an example of this. The advantage of a paper book is that people can keep them on their library shelves at home, he said.
Adil Al-Harthy, another visitor to the fair, which ends on Saturday, expressed the same sentiment, saying that collecting books makes him happy.
“This should explain why many visitors attended the inaugural ceremony graced by no less than Culture and Information Minister Adel Al-Toraifi,” he said.
Speaking about her survey, Al-Awishi added that the type and direction of the font, and even matters such as color, clarity, and distance or spaces all have a psychological impact on prospective readers.
Artist Hoda Ghazi Al-Rowais, who spoke during the forum about the history and philosophy of photography in books, said that some book cover designs contradict their content.
“The picture comes second after the title in terms of what the viewer or prospective reader sees,” she said.
In her paper, she said that the photograph of the book is often more popular than the book itself, citing the covers of well-known author Taha Hussein.
There are no laws regulating taste, so people choose whatever they like, she said.
She advised authors and designers to be unique, and urged readers not to make decisions based on covers, but rather to give the text a chance.
A final paper was presented by Ahmed Abdulkarim, a professor at Helwan University in Egypt, in which he explained the evolution of books and art over the years.

Saudi Arabia eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions

Updated 7 min 42 sec ago

Saudi Arabia eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia announced the easing of restrictions that has halted much of the activity in the country due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As of Sunday 31, May, the curfew on all areas of the Kingdom will be eased, except Makkah. Movement in cities and within the regions of the country will again be permitted, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Tuesday.

The easing will mean the Kingdom’s 24-hour lockdown is relaxed with a curfew from 3 p.m to 6 a.m until Sunday, after which the hours will change to 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.. Makkah will remain under a full 24-hour lockdown.

On June 21, all curfews in the Kingdom will be lifted and prayers at Makkah’s mosque will be permitted.

Before then, social distancing guidelines must continue to be adhered to and gatherings of more than 50 people will continue to be banned.

Authorities have also allowed the attendance at ministries, government agencies and private sector companies, and the return of their office activities.

Some economic and commercial activities will also be allowed to take place including those at wholesale and retail shops, as well as malls. Cafes will be permitted to operate once more.

However, all job sectors where social distancing rules are harder to achieve such as beauty salons, barbershops, sports and health clubs, recreational centers and cinemas will remain closed.

Umrah pilgrimage and international flights will continue to be suspended until further notice.

The new rules are subject to constant evaluation at the health ministry and can be changed if the situation warrants it.


— More to follow.