I've been called a book snob, an art snob, a film snob, and probably other kinds of snob that I can't remember. Recently, I was told I "talk fancy." I'm not even sure what that means, but I absolutely deny every charge, and counter with the assertion that my taste is far less "snobbish" than that of my accusers, largely because I don't make the same distinctions between "high" and "low" art they seem to imply.
No one reads books they think are awful. At least, not on a regular basis; you might just to keep abreast of current trends, or to make fun once in awhile, but most people won't consistently read books (or watch movies, etc.) they think are bad. People naturally apply hierarchy to what they enjoy; these books are bad, these ones are okay, those over there are really good. Whether it can be helped or not isn't really the question. People rate everything.
But it's not just that they accept some things and reject others. To keep the book analogy, there are books they don't like, books they like, and books they call good but hold at arm's length because they're too difficult or intimidating or dark. The books in the latter category (which could include anything from The Lord of the Rings to Crime and Punishment to If on a winter's night a traveler) are held to be mystically superior to other books, an elite group to which common detritus cannot and must not attain, but to which most readers apparently cannot attain, either.
It's the old cult of the artist, come back to dictate both taste and preference. Because, for every person who admits they've never even attempted War and Peace, there are three more who carry it around to look smart and maybe get a date at the coffee shop.
When will society realize there's no such thing as highbrow and lowbrow art? no difference between pop, folk, and high culture? no meaning in definitions that insist on arbitrary gradations of greatness and worthlessness?
There are two kinds of book: good books, and bad books. Good books are consistent within themselves, have something worthwhile to say, are aesthetically pleasing, and have at least some semblence of subtlety. Bad books are bland, obvious, unsubtle, and present no unique, interesting, significant, or accurate view of the world or people. And never the twain shall meet. Does it matter or should it trouble us that both The Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh and Moby-Dick are legitimately considered good books? Absolutely not.
If I say, "That book wasn't very good," I'm not saying, "You're an idiot for having read that." What I am saying is that it failed the litmus all good books must pass. Likewise, if I say the Star Wars films are bad, I'm not implying that no one should watch them; just that they shouldn't be put on the pedestal they often are, and that George Lucas has the originality of a termite.
A snob is by definition one who "imitates, cultivates, or slavishly admires social superiors." If I don't like a movie or painting or book, it's because it doesn't live up to the objective standard movies or paintings or books should live up to. That doesn't make me a snob. In fact, it makes whoever accuses me of snobbery the very thing they appear to hate, since they're the ones attributing hierarchy to a body of work the individual elements of which can only be described as good or bad.