You can certainly scratch it with your finger nail if you tried, as it is just a thin layer of 'rubber' paint. Like any rubber it does ages with time so wearing off is unavoidable. I actually scratch the whole rubber surface off from my Fuze's click wheel and like it much better.
Well, people complained about the original metal finishing not being pretty enough and now the rubber coating isn't likely to last forever. Win some lose some.
Well I like to gain some and loose nothing, durability is a must if you want to keep it as long as possible or at least sale it in a good condition.
Neat idea! James you can go ahead and load some paper covers in the box I don't think anybody will mind.