Crowdfunded eBooks: Unglue.it Is Live!
As we noted on Tuesday, Eric Hellman and his team (including librarian Andromeda Yelton) were planning to launch their Unglue.it crowdfunded ebook platform today.
The platform is now live!
Here’s the official announcement along with coverage from Matt Ennis at LJ and our post from Tuesday that includes background and a link to a recent audio interview with Founder and President, Eric Hellman.
- Michael Laser, 6-321
- Joseph Nassise, Riverwatch
- Nancy Rawles, Love Like Gumbo
- Budding Reader, Cat and Rat
- Open Book Publishers, Oral Literature in Africa, by Ruth Finnegan.
Unglue.it is a crowdfunding site that lets book lovers pay authors and publishers to make their already-published books free to the world under a Creative Commons license. If supporters pledge an amount chosen by the books’ rights holders before a given deadline, those books will be released as “unglued” ebook editions. For these campaigns, deadlines vary from approximately two to six months, and funding goals from approximately $5,000 to $25,000.
As the popularity of ebooks skyrockets, readers have been discovering both their convenience and their disadvantages. Proprietary formats and digital rights management (DRM) technology lock ebooks to specific devices and make it hard for people to keep reading their books as technology changes. Many ebooks cannot even be lent by libraries. Unglued ebooks solve these problems. They have no DRM and can be copied and shared without infringing copyright due to the Creative Commons license. Instead of receiving royalties, rights holders are paid one licensing fee of their choosing in advance. Book lovers pledge toward this fee using the Unglue.it platform.
“The ebook technology revolution creates new opportunities for innovative markets that support readers, authors, publishers, and libraries,” said Eric Hellman, President of Gluejar Inc., the company behind Unglue.it. “Our crowdfunding platform will help the books that we love join the public commons for all to enjoy and cherish, while still respecting copyright and creators’ livelihoods.”
About Unglue.it: Unglue.it (http://unglue.it) is a crowdfunding platform which rewards rights holders for making their ebooks available to the world under a Creative Commons license (http://creativecommons.org). Unglue.it runs campaigns for previously published books, allowing book lovers to pledge toward giving them to the world. When rights holders’ target prices are reached, they receive funds in exchange for issuing an unglued ebook edition which can be freely read, copied, and shared, noncommercially, worldwide. For more information, see http://unglue.it/press.
About Michael Laser: Michael Laser (http://michaellaser.com) writes novels for both adults and young people, as well as short stories and nonfiction. His essays have been featured in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, and Salon.com, among others. He also runs a web site, http://News-Basics.com, where students and adults can get concise, impartial overviews of important news topics.
About Joseph Nassise: Joe Nassise (http://josephnassise.com/) is the author of more than a dozen novels, including the TEMPLAR CHRONICLES series, the JEREMIAH HUNT trilogy, and the just-launched GREAT UNDEAD WAR series. His work has been nominated for both the Bram Stoker Award and the International Horror Guild Award, been praised by such literary masters as Clive Barker and Peter Straub, and been translated into half a dozen languages to date. He has written for both the comic and role-playing game industries and also served two terms as president of the Horror Writers Association, the world’s largest organization of professional horror and dark fantasy writers.
About Nancy Rawles: Nancy Rawles (http://www.nancyrawles.com) is the author of three critically-acclaimed and award-winning novels. Love Like Gumbo won an American Book Award for its portrayal of a lesbian daughter’s struggle for independence from her warm but suffocating family. Crawfish Dreams, the second in a series about the same family, was selected for the Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers Program. Nancy’s third novel, My Jim, tells the story of the wife and children of Mark Twain’s famous slave character from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. My Jim is the winner of the American Library Association’s Alex Award and the Legacy Award in Fiction from the Hurston/Wright Foundation. The Seattle Public Library chose My Jim as the 2009 selection for its popular program Seattle Reads, in which readers all over the city are encouraged to read and participate in discussions about one book.
About Budding Reader: Budding Reader is an independent publisher which aims to make learning to read easier and more fun for all children, especially struggling readers. Their book sets incorporate research-based principles to build literacy skills. In addition, Budding Reader partners with literacy nonprofits to donate one ebook to a child in need for every book sold. Their non-profit partner, Worldreader, distributes e-readers and e-books in the developing world.
About Open Book Publishers: Open Book is a scholarly publisher that is changing the nature of the traditional academic book. Their authors range from early-career academics to eminent scholars, chosen on the basis of academic merit and public value through a rigorous peer review process. As a signatory of the Budapest Open Access Initiative, they offer free online editions of their books to benefit scholars worldwide, while also selling traditional print and electronic copies.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.