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rodneyl4
16 reviews
38 helpful votes
1/25/19
It is extremely sad if you don't already know about Project Gutenberg, the online library of thousands of public domain books that can be downloaded legally and for free. For the benefit of the public in general, everything an author has published loses its copyright 70 or so years after said author dies. These works "go into the public domain," meaning that anyone can duplicate and distribute them as they wish.

Project Gutenberg has been in operation since long before most folks had ever heard of an Internet, back in 1971 with a digitization of the United States Declaration of Independence. Project Gutenberg volunteers all around the world take books whose copyrights have expired and add them to the organization's website for people like you and me to enjoy free of charge.

These are not crappy insufferable 'books' by crackpot so-called self published authors but real works of world renown by well-known authors. Project Gutenberg has over 57,000 titles as of this writing and with limited resources just like any organization they take care to publish relevant material. They have pretty much every English-language book from before the 20th century that most people could think of as a classic.

It's sad to me that I feel I have to explain the concept of public domain to folks that I feel should already know, but at the risk of coming off pedantic I have to take the risk to help stem the tide against people acting thoughtlessly. It's unfortunate that most know of Hulu or Netflix but not of an at least marginally more valuable contribution to society like Project Gutenberg, whose products are free and have a greater chance of contributing your moral development and happiness.

It's important to note for speakers of other languages in addition to or instead of English, that there are many other Project Gutenberg spinoffs for other countries and languages. They have permission to use the Project Gutenberg name but otherwise are entirely separate organizations. A lot of these projects have extensive offerings. Notably, the German spinoff have all the psychology classics, naturally in their original German.

So do yourself and the world a favor and instead of another boring episode of Friends from your favorite video streaming service (after all, friends don't let friends watch Friends) how about a night of "Gutenberg n' chill" instead?
rosheenm
1 review
1 helpful vote
11/30/18
Great project, lots of books in a variety of formats and really well done. Don't know what else to say, great job and keep up the good work!
jaredb56
3 reviews
4 helpful votes
5/29/18
Nothing bad about free books.

Yes, they are old, but they are classics, so you can do a lot worse than spending an afternoon with any of the books they have available.
mels132
3 reviews
8 helpful votes
3/26/18
If it is out of copyright, you can probably find it here. In 2019 a twenty-year extension to copyrights ends, which means that those books will become a huge addition to this already massive collection of FREE TO DOWNLOAD BOOKS in text, epub, mobi, PDF, and other forms, as well as AUDIO versions, through LIBRIVOX. This is not a library. You download it, you own it. I have downloaded books and short stories from Gutenberg.org for many years now.
Gutenberg appreciates donations, but they are not in the least bit pushy about it, which makes me want to donate.
simonh79
3 reviews
5 helpful votes
1/18/17
An exquisite database of books from all around the world. And all that treasure goes for free! Just superb!
tn1
269 reviews
1,629 helpful votes
3/22/11
I'm sure that most ebook reader owners already know about this site - thousands and thousands of free ebooks that can be downloaded in Epub, Kindle, HTML and text formats for pretty much any ebook reader.

The site could be prettier, but hey, these guys work off of volunteers' sweat and a love of $#*!ens and Twain. We can trade aesthetics for scholar.

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