Good Website for Free Books

dblue

A Disturbance in the Force
Anyone there find this website yet?
_www.scribd.com
I have found a lot of good books there -- free downloands after you register (free).
You can also post your own writings and books.
Dhane Blue
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
Hi Dhane, do you know for certain that this website does not violate copyright on any of these books?  If the copyrights are violated, we do not allow the link to be posted on the forum. It's really not fair to authors to just take their work without some sort of energetic or monetary compensation.
 

psychegram

The Living Force
This website is fantastic. I found it myself about a week ago, and have been reading Mouravieff's Gnosis and Ouspensky's In Search of the Miraculous there. I'm pretty sure neither of those works are still under copyright.

Speaking of copyright:

It is our policy to respond to clear notices of alleged copyright infringement that comply with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. In addition, we will promptly terminate without notice the accounts of those determined by us to be "repeat infringers". If you are a copyright owner or an agent thereof, and you believe that any content hosted on our web site (_www.scribd.com) infringes your copyrights, then you may submit a notification pursuant to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA") by providing Scribd's Designated Copyright Agent with the following information in writing (please consult your legal counsel or see 17 U.S.C. Section 512(c)(3) to confirm these requirements):

  1. A physical or electronic signature of a person authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
  2. Identification of the copyrighted work claimed to have been infringed, or, if multiple copyrighted works on the Scribd web site are covered by a single notification, a representative list of such works at that site.
  3. Identification of the material that is claimed to be infringing or to be the subject of infringing activity and that is to be removed or access to which is to be disabled, and information reasonably sufficient to permit Scribd to locate the material. Providing URLs in the body of an email is the best way to help us locate content quickly.
  4. Information reasonably sufficient to permit Scribd to contact the complaining party, such as an address, telephone number, and, if available, an electronic mail address at which the complaining party may be contacted.
  5. A statement that the complaining party has a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law.
  6. A statement that the information in the notification is accurate, and under penalty of perjury, that the complaining party is authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.


Please note that under Section 512(f) of the DMCA, any person who knowingly materially misrepresents that material or activity is infringing may be subject to liability.

Please note that Scribd may, at our discretion, send a copy of such notices to a third-party for publication. As such, your letter (with personal information removed) may be forwarded to Chilling Effects ( http://www.chillingeffects.org ) for publication.
Counter-Notification

If you elect to send us a counter notice, to be effective it must be a written communication that includes the following (please consult your legal counsel or see 17 U.S.C. Section 512(g)(3) to confirm these requirements):

  1. A physical or electronic signature of the subscriber.
  2. Identification of the material that has been removed or to which access has been disabled and the location at which the material appeared before it was removed or access to it was disabled.
  3. A statement under penalty of perjury that the subscriber has a good faith belief that the material was removed or disabled as a result of mistake or misidentification of the material to be removed or disabled.
  4. The subscriber’s name, address, and telephone number, and a statement that the subscriber consents to the jurisdiction of Federal District Court for the judicial district in which the address is located, or if the subscriber’s address is outside of the United States, for any judicial district in which Scribd may be found, and that the subscriber will accept service of process from the person who provided notification under subsection (c)(1)(C) or an agent of such person.


Please note that under Section 512(f) of the Copyright Act, any person who knowingly materially misrepresents that material or activity was removed or disabled by mistake or misidentification may be subject to liability.



Designated Copyright Agent



Scribd’s Designated Copyright Agent to receive notifications and counter-notifications of claimed infringement can be reached as follows: Attention: Copyright Agent, Scribd, Inc., 211 Sutter St., Floor 2, San Francisco, CA 94108 or by email at copyright@scribd.com. For clarity, only DMCA notices should go to the Scribd Designated Copyright Agent. Any other feedback, comments, requests for technical support or other communications should be directed to Scribd customer service through support@scribd.com. You acknowledge that if you fail to comply with all of the requirements of this section, your DMCA notice may not be valid.

So while copyrighted works may be posted there (hey, it happens on Youtube), Iit looks to be on the up-and-up.
 

Laura

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
psychegram said:
This website is fantastic. I found it myself about a week ago, and have been reading Mouravieff's Gnosis and Ouspensky's In Search of the Miraculous there. I'm pretty sure neither of those works are still under copyright.

Actually, I believe that both of them are still under copyright. And if you are reading Gnosis in English, it is probably Robin Amis' translation, in which case you are taking money out of the pocket of an elderly, disabled gentleman.
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
Laura said:
Actually, I believe that both of them are still under copyright.  And if you are reading Gnosis in English, it is probably Robin Amis' translation, in which case you are taking money out of the pocket of an elderly, disabled gentleman.

And this is exactly the point.  It's not about 'everyone is doing it' or

psychegram said:
So while copyrighted works may be posted there (hey, it happens on Youtube), Iit looks to be on the up-and-up.

It's about the very real fact that if you take and benefit from the life's work of another without adequate compensation to that person, you create an energetic imbalance. This imbalance will be a detriment to YOU.  This is a very real thing.

Aside from that energetic aspect, it's just rather a tacky and inconsiderate thing to do, especially when one is in a position to spend $15 or $20, or $100 even, to just buy the book and support the author's efforts. 
 

Laura

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
I've had to write to scribd three times now to have Secret History removed. They always remove it, but then someone else puts it back up and they try to disguise it. So the site is not necessarily on the "up and up". It is exactly as "up and up" as the users, not the host.
 

psychegram

The Living Force
Laura said:
I've had to write to scribd three times now to have Secret History removed. They always remove it, but then someone else puts it back up and they try to disguise it. So the site is not necessarily on the "up and up". It is exactly as "up and up" as the users, not the host.

Unfortunately, once a service such as scribd is being provided, it's very difficult for the proprietors to police: writing an algorithm that will catch all copyrighted works is too likely to filter out creative commons material, and there just aren't enough people working for the site. As a result it becomes the rightsholder's responsibility to police.

Laura said:
psychegram said:
This website is fantastic. I found it myself about a week ago, and have been reading Mouravieff's Gnosis and Ouspensky's In Search of the Miraculous there. I'm pretty sure neither of those works are still under copyright.

Actually, I believe that both of them are still under copyright. And if you are reading Gnosis in English, it is probably Robin Amis' translation, in which case you are taking money out of the pocket of an elderly, disabled gentleman.

I checked, and while Amis is the editor, the translation was done by S.A. Wissa. In the copyright section beneath the streaming text it says 'Attribution Non-Commercial'; the text itself displays a clear copyright (1989 S.A. Wissa and Praxis Research Institute) saying 'no part of this book may be published without permission from the publisher, so either Praxis has given their permission, or they haven't (in which case it's within their power to have the work removed, per the website's copyright policy.)

The only copy of Secret History I was able to find is an Italian (I think) translation, Historia Secetra del Mundo y Como Salir Vivo de Ella, for which it also says 'Attribution Non-Commercial' (for the record, I spent my last $40 on Secret History, and just finished reading it.)

A question, however, begs itself: how exactly is what scribd is doing any different from what a library does? And I don't mean details like 'a library can only loan out one copy at a time', 'one's a website and the other's a building', etc., I mean in terms of the spirit of the endeavor: providing a source for written knowledge, free of charge, to any and all.

From a more practical perspective, it's very difficult for most people to read books on a computer monitor, so for the most part either they'll read a few pages and get distracted by something else (in principle no different from leafing through a copy in a bookstore and putting it back on the shelf), or they'll decide it's worth it and buy the paper copy. Many authors (the science fiction writers Charles Stross and Cory Doctorow come to mind) have found that works they put online for free outsell others. I'm a case in point: I bought my first book online just a few months ago (The Ascent of Humanity, by Charles Eisenstein) after reading the entire text (and yes I know I just said 'it's very difficult for most people to read books on a computer monitor', but I'm not most people), which he put up for free on his website. I was so impressed by the book that I wanted my friends and family to read it as well, and I knew they wouldn't read it online, so I went ahead and bought it (they didn't read it. Such is life.)

anart said:
Laura said:
Actually, I believe that both of them are still under copyright. And if you are reading Gnosis in English, it is probably Robin Amis' translation, in which case you are taking money out of the pocket of an elderly, disabled gentleman.

And this is exactly the point. It's not about 'everyone is doing it' or

psychegram said:
So while copyrighted works may be posted there (hey, it happens on Youtube), Iit looks to be on the up-and-up.

It's about the very real fact that if you take and benefit from the life's work of another without adequate compensation to that person, you create an energetic imbalance. This imbalance will be a detriment to YOU. This is a very real thing.

Aside from that energetic aspect, it's just rather a tacky and inconsiderate thing to do, especially when one is in a position to spend $15 or $20, or $100 even, to just buy the book and support the author's efforts.

And if one isn't in a position to spend money? To continue the analogy above, does it create an energetic imbalance if I borrow a copy from the local library, or if a friend loans it to me? In both cases the reader reads for free and the author gets nothing. Or what if I buy it from a used bookshop? I might be wrong about this, but I don't think the author gets anything in that case, either. Is that theft too?
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
psychegram, you seem quite invested in proving that taking copyrighted material for free is 'ok'.  It's your life, and if that's what you choose to do and to believe, then that is what you choose to do and to believe.  Your comparison to a library is invalid, simply due to the fact that most, if not all, libraries purchase the copies they keep in stock.

The concept of an energetic imbalance is quite important and there are other ways, other than purchasing the copy, to pay - including promoting the work one has 'taken' to others who will buy it, in supporting the author in other ways, or in donating funds to the author when one can. If one does not make often extraordinary efforts to 'pay back' for what they have 'taken' in whatever way they can, then they are 'contracting' and taking more than they give; in short, they are increasing their service to self. 

With regard to the concept of energetic imbalance, it is important to factor in the true, objective value of the work in question and the effect it has on one's life.  If it is a trivial work, then a small amount of 'paying back' is necessary.  If is a work that changes you, then I personally do not know that one has ever paid back enough.



(as a side note, I do almost all of my reading on computer monitors, so you might want to reconsider how 'speshul' and 'unlike most people' you are and that it is, in fact, quite common practice.)
 

durabone

Jedi Council Member
Laura said:
So the site is not necessarily on the "up and up". It is exactly as "up and up" as the users, not the host.

Thank you for that Laura. I have been reading some technical docs there, like power point presentations about data analysis and the like. I was thinking of posting some of my stuff there, but now I waver. The iPaper tools reveal an intent for sharing, but little is done to prevent stealing. It seems that if it can make content searchable and sharable, then it could also use crawlers to detect theft. For example, if I put a document up for private viewing, then why not also offer me the service of spawning crawlers to detect others publishing my stuff? Or maybe even let me use iPaper to insert the equivalent of a hidden, digital watermark (that could also possibly crawled). And if I had such a crawler service, the first thing that I would use it for (if I were them) would be to search my own site for docs that have already been proven to be copyrighted especially after I had received from someone who chose to "submit a notification pursuant to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ("DMCA")"

db
 

psychegram

The Living Force
anart said:
psychegram, you seem quite invested in proving that taking copyrighted material for free is 'ok'. It's your life, and if that's what you choose to do and to believe, then that is what you choose to do and to believe. Your comparison to a library is invalid, simply due to the fact that most, if not all, libraries purchase the copies they keep in stock.

The concept of an energetic imbalance is quite important and there are other ways, other than purchasing the copy, to pay - including promoting the work one has 'taken' to others who will buy it, in supporting the author in other ways, or in donating funds to the author when one can. If one does not make often extraordinary efforts to 'pay back' for what they have 'taken' in whatever way they can, then they are 'contracting' and taking more than they give; in short, they are increasing their service to self.

With regard to the concept of energetic imbalance, it is important to factor in the true, objective value of the work in question and the effect it has on one's life. If it is a trivial work, then a small amount of 'paying back' is necessary. If is a work that changes you, then I personally do not know that one has ever paid back enough.



(as a side note, I do almost all of my reading on computer monitors, so you might want to reconsider how 'speshul' and 'unlike most people' you are and that it is, in fact, quite common practice.)

('speshul'? That's harsh, anart. I's kan spel, yu no!)

(And, most people I know hate reading online. You're different, great, good for you and welcome to the Oh Lord My Eyes Hurt club.)

I'm very aware that a gift hoarded stagnates and poisons the soul. Take music. I - like many - often download music (and yes, for free.) I also go to live shows, buy CDs and t-shirts directly from the artists, and generally try to give back as much as I can to the musical community as a whole, in what I feel is the best way, ie to those most in need of support (small, independent artists), who will get the most out of it. Perhaps 10% if the cost of a CD bought in a store will make its way back to the musician, the rest being raked off by various middlemen; in stark contrast, almost all of the cost of a CD bought at a show goes right into the artist's pocket. Besides this, artists above a certain level of popularity are less in need of support than the independents. So, in this way I keep the circle going: what I receive from one, I give back to another. The idea that the person/group one receives from must be the same that is given back to I actually find to be very STS; in sharp contrast to the gift circle, whereby what one receives from one direction, one gives back with interest in another.

If I seem somewhat invested in proving taking copyrighted material is OK, that's because I am. Copyright and patent law is a subject dear to my heart, and has been for about ten years now, ie my entire adult life. Perhaps I am wrong in this, but it looks to me that those laws - indeed, that whole proprietary way of thinking and operating - is being used by the PTB as a method of cultural control.

Incidentally, I'm not trying to justify my behaviour. I'm trying to explain a different way of seeing things.
 

PepperFritz

The Living Force
psychegram said:
how exactly is what scribd is doing any different from what a library does? And I don't mean details like 'a library can only loan out one copy at a time', 'one's a website and the other's a building', etc., I mean in terms of the spirit of the endeavor: providing a source for written knowledge, free of charge, to any and all.

The concept of libaries having the right to provide "written knowledge, free of charge, to any and all" without compensating the writers involved, no longer exists in most civilized countries. As the fight for writers' copyright evolved, it began to be recognized that libraries did NOT in fact have the "right" to lend books without compensation to the authors. Eventually, the concept of the "Public Lending Right" (PLR) was developed, initiated in Denmark in 1946. There are now almost 25 countries throughout the world that work cooperatively to compensate writers for the use of their work in libraries (including my own country, Canada).

The program works like this: Libraries and educational institutions pay the Public Lending Right Commission in their home country for an annual "licence" to lend physical copies of books, tapes, CDs, etc., and to also allow users to photocopy a limited number of book pages. It is the responsibility of individual authors to register with the PLRC. The PLRC in turn distributes the monies paid for such licences to the writers registered with them, on a sliding scale based on the number of books they have published and how many libraries tend to carry. Although library users do not directly "pay" for a library card, the cost is passed on to them via public taxes (in the case of public libraries) and tuition fees (in the case of schools).

In the early years of the internet, copyrights were flagrantly ignored by website owners, who argued that it was impossible to "police" the net. However, after several landmark lawsuits were brought and won against "big business" website owners (such as newspapers), there is now grudging acknowledgment that copyrights must be respected and the use of work on the internet compensated. A similar process has happened in the music industry, with the result that music-sharing sites no longer provide music downloads "free". The only reason sites like "scribd" get away with what they are doing is that they are not (as yet) making any significant profit, and therefore are not "worth" writers' organizations/lawyers taking them to court.
 

PepperFritz

The Living Force
Psychegram:

If you were a working writer, whose livelihood depended on being adequately compensated for your work, you would not be so supportive of "free books for all". You would see the issue as professional writers do -- as an criminal act of theft that directly affects their ability to earn a living via the practice of their craft and the sale of their product in the marketplace.

If you earned your living making clothing, and people just came along and took the clothing being offered for sale in your store, insisting that "clothing should be free to all!" and "no one should be able to OWN clothing!", you would not stay in business for very long, would you? And if writers have to stop writing because people insist on taking their work free of charge, then they cannot continue writing.

Clearly you do not place the same "value" on intellectual property that you do on any other kinds of "property". That would not be the case if it was YOUR "property" that was being stolen.
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
psychegram said:
('speshul'? That's harsh, anart. I's kan spel, yu no!)

Not harsh at all, I'm just trying to point out that your self-importance is, once again, showing.


pg said:
I'm very aware that a gift hoarded stagnates and poisons the soul.

What an odd thing to say considering your posts thus far.  I suppose this is a matter of either blatant contradiction or talking the talk but not walking the walk?


pg said:
Take music. I - like many - often download music (and yes, for free.) I also go to live shows, buy CDs and t-shirts directly from the artists, and generally try to give back as much as I can to the musical community as a whole, in what I feel is the best way, ie to those most in need of support (small, independent artists), who will get the most out of it. Perhaps 10% if the cost of a CD bought in a store will make its way back to the musician, the rest being raked off by various middlemen; in stark contrast, almost all of the cost of a CD bought at a show goes right into the artist's pocket. Besides this, artists above a certain level of popularity are less in need of support than the independents. So, in this way I keep the circle going: what I receive from one, I give back to another.

We are not discussing music - is there a reason for this obvious digression?

pg said:
The idea that the person/group one receives from must be the same that is given back to I actually find to be very STS; in sharp contrast to the gift circle, whereby what one receives from one direction, one gives back with interest in another.

This, also, makes little sense in this context. I don't think your compensation of one author for another author's work would make much sense.

pg said:
If I seem somewhat invested in proving taking copyrighted material is OK, that's because I am.

Ahhh!  Some truth!! :thup:

pg said:
Incidentally, I'm not trying to justify my behaviour. I'm trying to explain a different way of seeing things.

Yes, you are trying to justify your behavior, to state differently is a lie.
 

PepperFritz

The Living Force
psychegram said:
The idea that the person/group one receives from must be the same that is given back to I actually find to be very STS; in sharp contrast to the gift circle, whereby what one receives from one direction, one gives back with interest in another.

Interesting. You feel you have the right to "take" property that does not belong to you, and not directly compensate the person/group that produces that property, as long as you "give back with interest in another [direction]." Could you provide some examples of the "giving back with interest" that you have done "in another direction" that you feel is adequate compensation for "taking" a copyrighted book from the internet free of charge?

I'd also be interested in knowing how often you "take" books from bookstore shelves without directly paying the bookstore, as per this "alternative" compensation scheme of yours? And how about food? Do you financially compensate the man who sells cheese in your local farmer's market, or do you just take his cheese and promise to "give it back with interest in another direction"?

Of course, I already know the answer to that question. You only "take" products that you can get away with "taking", not those products whose producers who would call the police and have you arrested for such "taking". And therein lies your hypocrisy and dishonesty: You do not risk any kind of negative consequences to yourself in your practice of this "alternative" payment method you so strongly believe in. No, you're just like any other run-of-the-mill petty thief -- you "take" what you can get away with "taking", and otherwise obediently follow the rules of society.

There is nothing even remotely "STO" about your "alternative compensation" practice. It is just a lofty-sounding after-the-fact" justification for STS behaviour. One of the many lies you tell yourself on a daily basis.
 

rrraven

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
oh no :-[,i followed the link and started reading ISOTM.... but i will stop now and wait for the book to come to me in another way....if i am meant to read it , it will some day ,i'm sure.
i'm somewhat broke atm (buhoo self pity) :P , likely a sign i'm not ready for the Work just yet ...so its back to cleaning the machine some more and finding a way to become a good obyatel(sic) so i can afford it when i find it.
Thanks for pointing out the copyright issue ,that was a close call
RRR
 
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