patricia, i completely agree with that description for the advent of the printing press. that really *was* a revolution which completely overturned the existing hierarchy of knowledge by taking it out of the hands of the few (the educated priests and men of the church) and making it potentially available to *anyone*. but i personally see ebooks as an innovation more equivalent to cds or mp3s (after vinyls, etc.) than than to the printing press. it's another form of access to the text, and it is revolutionary to a certain degree and in some ways, but not in such an extreme one i don't think.
then again, if it makes previously obscure or inaccessible texts available to anyone including underdevelopped countries via internet and therefore opens up a new world of information, perhaps it *can* be equated with the democratisation of information that was first embodied by the original gutenberg press.
but in a way, revolutionary or not, the church / printing press example should serve to reassure reactionaries like Conrad : despite the invention of the printing press and the advent of increasingly cheap and widely available mass-produced texts, and some might say despite the best efforts of some, the church may no longer hold a technical monopoly on information but it is still present and going strong...