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Wendy Seltzer
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Alan Wexelblat
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About this weblog
Here we'll explore the nexus of legal rulings, Capitol Hill policy-making, technical standards development, and technological innovation that creates -- and will recreate -- the networked world as we know it. Among the topics we'll touch on: intellectual property conflicts, technical architecture and innovation, the evolution of copyright, private vs. public interests in Net policy-making, lobbying and the law, and more.

Disclaimer: the opinions expressed in this weblog are those of the authors and not of their respective institutions.

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In the Pipeline: Don't miss Derek Lowe's excellent commentary on drug discovery and the pharma industry in general at In the Pipeline

Copyfight

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February 29, 2008

Go Get Your Free Book

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Posted by Alan Wexelblat

A couple weeks ago I blogged about Neil Gaiman's work with his publisher to put up one of his books for free download. At the time, the fans voted on which book they wanted put up for free. Well, it's up, and last night Gaiman blogged this:

For the next month, your free copy of American Gods is waiting for you at http://tiny.cc/WRiXE

Feel free to spread the link as widely as possible around the web. If it works, and people read it, then a) we may be able to put up another book and b) sooner or later they'll simply let us give away the book in electronic form....


Yes, that's what he said. A privilege of success on the scale of Gaiman's is that you can think in terms of just giving your books away. But it's still true that other authors of comparable stature and success haven't publicly stated this as a goal. So excuse me if I boost signal for Gaiman a little bit.

Also, if you think Gaiman is being naive or doesn't understand what he's doing, you might want to hop over and read today's blog entry titled "The nature of free". You may or may not agree with him, but I don't think anyone can accuse him of going into this unknowingly.

Comments (4) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Interesting People


COMMENTS

1. Jaisne Blue Sexton on March 2, 2008 11:16 AM writes...

wow, how lame of you to send everyone first to a page loaded with tons of ads. oh, and it's not a free download actually, it's a free online read.

Permalink to Comment

2. The Data Digger on March 2, 2008 9:59 PM writes...

I have to agree with Jaisne Blue Sexton. I hope the error was in Alan Wexelblat's lack of appropriate use of terms. Please tell me Alan did not know the difference between "download" and "available for online read." If Alan did this purposefully to drive traffic to his ad filled space I think he should be kindly asked to not participate on Copyfighters. This blog post was on Technorati's front page. Shame on Harper Collins Publishing for not making it a free download. After all, S P I E G E L & G R A U gave Suze Orman's book "Women & Money" away as a free download. In the future, proper netiquette would be to write your post and include the link directly to the download. It keeps your reputation credible and your readers loyal. Nobody likes to feel duped.

Permalink to Comment

3. drwex on March 4, 2008 9:46 AM writes...

As should be clear from the placement of the URL within a quote, it's not my link. I certainly don't make any money off of this (either Copyfight or whatever Harper-Collins does).

If you'd like to give H-C your opinion on their putting up a free read of a book then by all means click the link that says "Give Us your feedback" and tell them to stop putting up free reads of books.

Yes, it's not a download. If you read what I wrote I said that Gaiman has been trying to get his publisher to put up free books and here's what he got done. I'm sorry if you were misled.

Finally, I confess that I don't see ads on any of the pages, either TinyURL's or H-C's. I run Adblock Plus on my Firefox and am often amazed at the amount of crap that appears on my friends' browsers. I do sometimes forget that the crap is there for people who haven't installed ad blockers.

Permalink to Comment

4. francis on March 12, 2008 6:51 AM writes...

I for one am really pleased that you pointed out the online book. Read it. Word after enthralling word. So what if I had to stay online? I don't mind them keeping stats, and I had no desire to print the book (all 600+ pages!)

My internet is always on, isn't yours?

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