Thursday, July 20, 2006

World eBook Fair - 12 MILLION DOWNLOADS

One of the best things about being a part of the eBook industry is that I have had the opportunity to connect with smart and fascinating people. It has been amazing to me how accessible my heroes in this industry really are. Long before this was an industry, when it was only an idea, Project Gutenberg began. Thirty-five years ago, in fact.

Michael Hart, the founder of Project Gutenberg, is one of the people that I knew of very early in my involvement with eBooks. His story was inescapable and very cool. He has spent most of his life working endless long hours alone, rallying volunteers, and doing all that is humanly possible to create public, free, unlimited access to the treasure trove of literature that has fallen out of copyright and into the public turning them into eBooks.

As I began fumbling through list serves and newsgroups, Michael Hart plucked me out and started an email friendship. I was fairly “geeked” (a term which means excited by things that many people would not readily understand). In one of our first chats, we got on a tangent about our favorite books. I told him that I had just finished reading Arthur Clark and Stephen Baxter’s, “Light of Other Days.” I started to extol its virtues and he told me he could pass along Arthur’s email address so I could tell him myself. This, for me, was a moment that for many young women would be equivalent to being told that they could call up Brad Pitt just to say, “Hi, you’re beautiful”.

Michael has since proven to be an invaluable business ally as well as a truly good friend. He has made himself available to our whole crew at DPP. As Michael and John Guagliardo, of World eBook Library, were preparing to put on the world eBook fair, Michael offered us the opportunity to sponsor the month-long summer eBook extravaganza.

DPPstore jumped at our chance to support this cause. In addition to celebrating the 35 year run of Project Gutenberg, World eBook Fair also offered an opportunity for people all around the world to download hundreds of thousands of eBook titles for free. To date, World eBook Fair has given away TWELVE MILLION eBooks.

Even after this event, DPPstore will continue our commitment to providing FREE eBooks through our store to support access to public domain titles. To visit our FREE section:


Interestingly, the mainstream media has picked up the story here and there - it was out on the AP wire before the event began. However, the list serves and newsgroups that discuss eBooks have almost entirely missed the fact that millions of eBooks are being disseminated across the world. There has been little or no discussion of this exciting event in the very groups that are dedicated to discussing all things eBook. I hope to see this change in the near future.

DPPstore is also celebrating World eBook Fair by offering a 50% off coupon for the remainder of the event on all items at the DPPstore. When ordering, simply enter the coupon code, “worldebookfair,” in the coupon field.

The World eBook Fair runs through August 4th, 2006.


Anonymous said...

I didnt find thing that i need... :-(

Catherine of DPP Store said...

Understood... While the World eBook Fair has its positives; I am the first to conceed that there was not enough diversity of content, and that it was overly difficult to search for specific selections.

A larger WEBF with more participants and a HUGE public awareness campaign could catalyze the kind of growth needed to take eBooks to a mass market level.

At present, I am always excited to find people on the street who know what eBooks are. Thanks for the comment.