Project Gutenberg: putting the e- into free books
Blogger nearly crashed - an OLiA posting, after all this time! Oh, yes - OLiA is back, baby, inspired by the doughty Web 2.0 bloggers. So, to business...
Project Gutenberg claim to be "the first and largest single collection of free electronic books" and who am I to disagree. There are over 27,000 free books in the searchable Online Book Catalogue and over 100,000 titles available at listed associate sites. The Project's 'Mission Statement' is "to encourage the creation and distribution of eBooks" - an extremely worthy aim that would fit in exactly with OLiA's own mission statement, if we had one.
So, what's the catch? Restrictions on use? Well, not really - this is the text at the start of every eBooks: "This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License (sic) included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org."
Incidentally, the Project Gutenberg site is a very good, practical and well organised example of a wiki.