LibriVox: Free Audio Books

Interested in free audio books? If you are, then you should check out yet another source of people investing their time, energy and effort giving and placing value in to the world.

The LibriVox project provides totally free audiobooks from the public domain. There is a catalog of works completed which include wonderful works such as Treasure Island, A Christmas Carol, The Raven, Moby Dick and many more.

LibriVox is a place where volunteers record chapters of books in the public domain, and then we release the audio files back onto the net (via podcast and catalog). Right now all our books are in English, but we welcome all languages – we just need volunteers willing to read in other languages.

Also note: LibriVox is an entirely VOLUNTEER effort. We have no budget, no staff, everything is done by volunteers. Keep that in mind if you see some errors, mistakes, or problems with how we do things.”

My intention is to participate in this effort. What saddens me is that most works in the public domain are pre-1923 due to the changes in copyright law (more about the public domain here). There are literally dozens of books I’d like to read — that are currently out of print — but trying to figure out who to go to, how much it would cost to obtain the rights to release an audio version in to the public domain, and then pay them is too hard.

With Google arm-wrestling publishers about Google Print (to scan and make works searchable), the Creative Commons striving to be an alternative to ‘traditional’ content providers, and podcasters pushing hard on the record industry to open up catalogs for mash-ups and use, perhaps win-win scenarios will come to the fore and make intellectual property more open and free.

2 Comments

  1. roarweb dot com on January 4, 2006 at 3:23 pm

    Reading Blogs

    One of the benefits of reading blogs is that they sometime can point you in the direction of really interesting stuff. Take Connecting the Dots by Steve Borsch for example. Im no longer sure why this blog ended up on my RSS list, …



  2. smith on November 3, 2006 at 5:06 am

    nice blog. i really appriciate the Librivox.definitely i will participate in this volunteer program.Our reading list is unfortunately almost exlusively old books. They have to be public domain in the US, But if any published contemporary author cares to dedicate their work to the public domain, we’ll consider it.
    http://www.karaditales.com



About Steve Borsch

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Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.