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A little bit about obooko

obooko is a free resource open to anyone, anywhere, regardless of means.

Where did the name come from?

We wanted to create a unique name containing the word 'book', while also conveying, in some way, the service we offer. Thus, from 'download books online to read offline' came forth obooko: the two 'o's, which are literal bookends, are taken from online and offline.

How long has obooko been online?

The website launched from the United Kingdom into cyberspace in December 2009 and continues to provide an opportunity for new and established writers from all parts of the world to self-publish and promote their work free of charge. And for us to offer fiction and non-fiction absolutely free for anyone to download.

How do we keep obooko free?

Over the years, our running costs have increased significantly. We therefore had to find a way to subsidise the maintenance and development of the website, but at the same time remain a free resource. There are a couple of ways we could do this:

1. Charge you for access by way of a membership fee
2. Ask for a donation
3. Display advertising on our pages

Charge for membership? How can books be free when you have to pay a membership fee to access them? Despite other sites adopting this practice, we believe it is unethical and deceitful to charge for accessing books that authors have licensed for free distribution. And absurd. The adverb 'Free' means without payment or charge.

We would not feel comfortable accepting donations: we are not a charity.

So, to ensure you don't have to part with any of your money, we chose advertising. We feel this an honest and transparent way to subsidise the site. We do not however allow advertising inside ebooks published on obooko.

Why do we require registration?

We have a perfectly sensible and practical reason in asking people to register: it is to ensure, to the best of our knowledge, that users of the site are of a minimum age of 13 and that we do not attract young children. Although we consider obooko to be a family oriented site, some ebooks are intended for mature readers and are listed as so. Although the responsibility for internet browsing rests with parents, we cannot risk unintentional download of these books by minors. For this reason we decided not to have a children's book category. We comply with the directives of COPPA, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act and do our best to make sure we do not attract young children to the site or collect personal data from anyone under the age of thirteen. This is something that inferior and illegal ebook distribution sites, and their users, overlook or do not consider.

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