How do you like the idea of compiling all the winning posts into an ebook?

How do you like the idea of compiling all the winning posts into an ebook? What do you think of Mr G Vishwanath’s idea?

IHM,

I just started copying and pasting all the award winning blog posts into a text file.
I am including the Category, the title of the blog post, the author, the date and the link,  followed by the full text of the blog post.
I am copying and pasting simultaneously into  sets of files for each category.
All the blog posts of a particular category will be compiled into a single file.
I am also copying and pasting ALL the blogs in all the categories into a single large text file.

This is to enable me to transfer the whole thing to my Ipad and to my pen drive for off line reading, on any convenient device, even without an internet connection.It will be a great E book for me to savour in installments as and when I find the time and inclination. I propose to call  this e book “Tejaswee Rao Award winning blog posts – 2011” and also include your blog site as the principal reference.

I can also prepare a pdf file of the contents later after some formatting but a text file will be smaller, and more easily readable on a variety of devices.

When completed I hope to have a fine collection of essays from a set of talented and unsung  writers who deserve a wider readership.

If any one else interested in a copy I will make it available after I complete it.
I may need a couple of days more to finish the task.

There is no commercial gain for me and I am doing this for my convenience and  the pleasure and satisfaction it gives me. I am willing to share it with any body without any consideration. I have all the time in the world to do this these days.

In case any blogger has an objection, I may please be alerted and I will exclude his/her contribution from this compilation. Since all the posts have already appeared publicly and and are freely available to any one I don’t think there is anything illegal in what I am doing. However it is better to be safe than sorry later.

Regards
GV

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101 thoughts on “How do you like the idea of compiling all the winning posts into an ebook?

  1. Great idea! But, the only problem will be that later comments on the post will not make it to the e-book! As we all would agree, comments as interesting as the post. The comments feature is unique for a blog, and it makes it interactive. A book is just the author’s opinion, this e-book will be multiple authors’ opinion; but a blog is a discussion forum.

    The e-book could be made after 3 months. That will capture a good number of comments.

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    • Chandru, some of the winning posts are old, most are atleast four-five months old, because the last date for entries to be submitted was on September. I am not sure if Mr GV is including the comments in this e-book, I think only the winning posts are included.

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      • No, I have not included the comments.
        But any one interested in the comments on a particular post can visit the link which I have mentioned prominently at the beginning of each post.

        A few posts have embedded video links (Youtube or TED)
        I have tried to mention them in brackets so that the off line reader of the post becomes aware of it and visits the original link to follow it up.
        This project has its limitations and this is the best I can do.

        However if most of you feel the comments must also be included, there is no technical problem in doing so. I need more time and need to re visit all the links and copy / paste the comments. I can only copy the present comments. How do we include future comments?

        For now let me finish what I started to do. I hope to complete compilation of the main blog posts in plain text format in all the categories by this evening.
        I can later consider embellishing them later for which I need more time.

        Considering PT’s warning, (he is a lawyer, while I am not) I would feel more at ease if we get the consent of the original writers before I put it up for public sharing.
        I have enough medical problems now, what with visits to hospitals and doctors and don’t want to compund them with vists to lawyers and courts.
        Regards
        GV

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      • Ideally a single link at the beginning for the post would be nice idea.

        Do not copy post comments in the e-book as some people use various commenting systems like Digsby which allow FB, Twitter and Google Logins. I am not completely sure on this but it might not be legal to print out names from such commenting systems in a e-book.

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  2. A great idea. Actually one of the bloggers mr. B. K. Chowla whim I met in Bangalore has done it. He has published his blogs as a book.

    Which is a great idea and this one too is.
    He even gave mea signed copy of his book.
    The ebook idea os also great. How to do ot. And when you do can I have a copy pleaae…

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  3. GV, I am alarmed at what you are saying, and need to correct your major misconception. When people put up their work on the internet, even for free, it does NOT mean you are free to distribute it in any format, whether or not you make money from it.

    If the blog authors allow you to publish and distribute their content in book format, they can never sell the first print publication rights to any other publisher ever again. This applies even if they give you permission unknowingly. So I urge everybody involved to educate themselves on copyright issues before embarking on this. There are intricate issues of copyright involved, and here in an international level that I am not even familiar with, but some basics:

    The author always holds all the rights to their work by default, even if they make their work available for free on the internet. These rights have actual monetary value: they can be sold to publishers separately or in combination. For instance, by publishing an article on my blog, I have used only its first electronic publishing rights – I could still sell the secondary electronic publishing rights, the first print publication rights, archival rights, the secondary print publication rights, international rights separately for publication in various countries, etc. Further, all these rights can be limited by time or print-run or both, which makes the deal even more complex due to the extra permutations and combinations.

    Sorry if this seems like an overreaction, but it’s better to know what you re getting into than to just blindly hope everything will be okay!

    As for my particular blog post, I am completely okay with allowing it to be included in this book on the following conditions:

    1. I want my name there in the byline. 🙂
    2. I want to edit it for clarity and context (my post was framed as a response to another blogger, so I wish to remove references to that other blogger since people reading it in a book have no way of clicking the links!)

    I’m also willing to help out with the actual creation of an ebook in the following ways:

    1. Drafting legal waiver forms for the interested bloggers to sign (I will be lifting this stuff from writers’ legal advice websites since I am a writer, not a lawyer!)

    2. Formatting the book for various e-reader formats

    3. Maybe even putting it on Amazon etc if people are interested. – we could have all proceeds go to a charity of our choice.

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  4. This is a great idea, I was also a bit overwhelmed by all those links I wanted to read. The ebook will help me read everything without a 100 tabs open 🙂 .

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  5. It’s certainly a very interesting idea and I’d be more than willing to download a copy.

    I’m no IP lawyer and I have no intention of being a killjoy, but as far as I know, blog posts are NOT public domain by default.

    The author retains all ownership rights over the content and may choose to license the it in a way which makes verbatim copying illegal. If the content is under copyright or under a “no-copying” creative commons license, it is probably prudent to not publish it, unless written permission (via email, perhaps) from the author has already been obtained.

    The fact that blog posts are freely available on the internet does not in itself mean that one is also free to copy and re-publish them.

    It would be a good idea to add some amount of personal commentary at the bottom of each post, perhaps highlighting the good points of the post and the important issues it raises. In legal terms, this has a “transformative” effect on the material and makes it much more likely to be considered fair use (and therefore legal). Including links to the original posts will also help towards that end. “Share-alike” content should be shared alike by including a link to the licensing details for such posts in the beginning.

    I’d say that the chances of getting sued over this are really very small, but like GV has stated, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

    For now, I’d love a link to the finished ebook. Many thanks to Vishvanathjee for undertaking what is sure to have been a very tedious and time-consuming task.

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  6. I think it is a wonderful idea. If anyone wants to read all of the comments they could always view them online. Anything giving these talented writers a wider readership would be great!

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  7. It’s true what Nandini and PT have pointed out about copyright issues and I think it’s better to get signed consent from the writers if they wish their work to be included. From my part, I’d be glad to sign for my entries.

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  8. Again, not wanting to be kill joy – what if someone who it is distributed to uses it for commercial means? The idea is a good one but can’t tell why there’s something about it that makes me a bit uneasy. This is knowing very well GV’s excellent intentions – I do trust him completely in this idea.

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    • Sangitha,

      In most jurisdictions, you are not responsible for enforcing someone else’s copyrighted work. I am not sure whether this is true for India as well.

      Back when I was just starting out in my career, I actually contemplated specializing in IP law, but I gave up the idea. Corporate law is complex, but IP law is insanely so. The sheer amount of open-ended junk legislation (which also happens to vary drastically between jurisdictions) in there is enough to drive anyone up the wall. Everything is open to interpretation. With digital data, all of this becomes doubly true and there is also the little matter of whose jurisdiction applies.

      Imagine this scenario:

      You purchase some catchy Pakistani tracks through iTunes and download them to your hard disk, so you can listen to them whenever you feel like. The university nerd who lives next door hears them playing and takes a fancy to them. Being on a student budget, she cannot afford internet or iTunes, so she simply sneaks into your house in the dead of the night, plugs in her laptop computer and copies your entire music collection to her hard drive. Voilà, copyright infringed!

      Are you, an Indian citizen, responsible for failing to avoid copyright infringement on content licensed in Pakistan, which you downloaded from an iTunes server located in Norway, which is owned by a hardware company based in Sweden, leased by Apple Inc., from Sunnyvale, California, USA? If so, whose laws apply? If not, who says so?

      The IP guys earn their pay.

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      • @PT,
        This is insane!
        Can a poor beggar sing a song in a train compartment and go around collecting the proferred coins from the commuters?
        What if the song is supposedly composed by the notorious Anu Malik for a Bollywood film?
        Who will sue the beggar ?
        Anu Malik or the original composer, wherever in the world he might be?
        I am a mere engineer and dont have the brains to hande legal conundrums like this.

        I am almost through with this project that I had set my heart on.
        I have completed compiling in plain text format till category 41.
        Just six more to go which I will do after lunch and a short snooze.

        But now I can’t upload to my drop box account and share the link as planned.
        That may make me technically guilty of pagiarism and illegal circulation.
        I can’t control who can download it and how he /she uses it.
        Sangitha’s fear is relevant.

        If there is any way I can share privately with a few of you who have shown interest, I would like to know .
        I must not be liable for legal action later.
        Lets say this is just a file containing the text of posts duly concatenated in serial order for private reference and not an e book being sold for profit.

        What if I collect clippings from newsapers and paste them in an album of my own for private reading? And also share them with others?
        If that is not illegal, can this be illegal?

        Please advise.
        Regards
        GV

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      • Someone entering your home or sneaking in is the first crime..
        Switching on the laptop without permission is another beforw we get to the copyright already a crime is done 🙂

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      • We’re probably already messing up several copyrights every day without even figuring it out. How about if GV only shares with the other authors, given everyone has the same stake in not publishing it elsewhere?

        You know what, just ditch it – GV, please feel free to use the post. Since I don’t profit from my work anyways, I am in the same position as ever! This is too complicated, PT….shall not grumble about lawyers earning their keep again! 😀

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        • Sangitha I was wondering how it would be if we actually published – a printed hard copy of the same collection? It seems we require formal contracts signed by each blogger. I am considering the idea – will get in touch with some publishers and find out how it can be done, the cost and other requirements.

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  9. I just your comment on my blogpost….I am okie with anything IHM/GV -jee…I would be more than happy to sign for the entries..the only thing is about the posts which were picked up from Womensweb…though I am the author of the posts, I think I will write to Aparna (Founder/Editor of womensweb) and confirm with her if she is okie with it…

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  10. Thank You! I trust GV jee and I have no problem with the e-book…

    1 measly post gets so much attention? Why not! But Im no lawyer and dont know how things actually work.

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  11. This is a great initiative GVji. If you’re looking for my consent, you’ve definitely got it.
    IHM, thanks so much for nominating my post on your own. I feel stupid for not submitting some of my other posts, for other categories. They would have been a good fit. I hope you carry on this tradition.

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  12. Hey IHM thank you. YES you need not ask me :). yes I am ok and fine and happy and alll ..
    it would be MY HONOUR to have my post amongst all these beautiful posts… what more can i ask for haan..

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  13. What a lovely idea! 🙂
    I have to been following all of IHM’s blogs and have of course read the links she directs to.
    Mr. GV, I am in favour of your idea. But please find a way to distribute your e-book only to those who want to read it. Do not let it be downloaded publicly.
    And oh, I am so looking forward to your e-book!!! 🙂

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  14. Its just a wonderful idea… Thankyou GV/IHM..

    But before I give my consent, I have one question; since u say people can have copies from you, what is the guarantee that they will not go ahead and publish all these entries for monetary benefits in future ??

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  15. Okay.
    Done.
    I have sent the first draft to IHM.
    She will attend to the matter of legal formalities and permissions from the original writers.
    I am not making my draft available to anybody else now.
    It may be improper and possibly illegal to do so.
    Thanks to all who alerted me about the pitfalls.
    I am rather naive in these matters.

    Thanks to all for welcoming the idea.
    It was a pleasure undertaking this task.
    Regards
    GV

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  16. Hi IHM,

    First of all, let me just thank you for giving the great news that my post was considered as one of the winning post. (Came as a surprise ).

    By all means do include them in an e-book that you plan to do and make the difference that you are already working towards.

    Thank you once again

    Tall Guy

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  17. The e-book sounds like a wonderful idea…infact I’d go one step ahead & say Publish it. GIven the the right kind of promotion & foreword from a popular author or personality it could gain even more recognition.

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  18. I want one! There were some excellent blogs, and I have decided it is high time some of my friends learn a bit about women’s rights and self respect. My resolution for the New Year? Who knows? Anyway, save a copy for me 😀

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  19. Would be fantastic! That collection should ideally be required reading for all youngsters – college students and high school students in India (Since young minds are more malleable to change)! Maybe for starters, you can compile all articles and make a PASSWORD PROTECTED PDF. The password would be available on E-mail request from the host(s). I too am not clear about E-publishing and copyright issues, but it would be grossly unfair for someone to copy and profit from these articles/pass these on without appropriate acknowledgements.

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  20. Hi IHM and GVjee,
    At the outset, thanks for selecting my post (http://thebanyantrees.com/?p=1398) for the award 🙂
    Now this post is one chapter of an ongoing serial I am attempting to write for an online magazine called The Banyan Trees(TBT). I haven’t signed a formal contract with the publishers, but my understanding is that I will not publish whatever I contribute to them anywhere else for at least 3 months after publishing it in TBT. I haven’t discussed this with the editor yet, but I would like to request you to hold off including the chapter in the proposed e-book till then. In lieu of that, a link to the site (where all the chapters can be found) would be great!
    Thanks so much again, and congrats to all the winners!
    Regards
    Manasa

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  21. @Sandhya,
    Okay.
    Noted your request.
    I have already taken action.
    A revised draft of the compilation of all the posts is being being prepared by me in MS Word format with some improved formatting and sent to IHM today or tomorrow. I have included this additional link in the revised draft.

    @Manasa,
    Your post is being removed but your name, the heading of the blog post and a link is being retained with a note from the anthologist indicating that for copyright reasons, the text of the blog is not included here. If in reasonable time you are able to give us the go ahead, we will be glad to re-include your post. I am personally sorry to omit it. I had enjoyed reading it.

    @Desi Girl and Suranga Date,

    I am also trying to get the Devanagari characters to appear exactly as they appeared in the original blog posts. I couldn’t get them to appear in my previous plain text draft. But in MS Word format I should have no problem.

    @PT, Sangitha, Nandini,
    We are keeping your concerns in mind and all reasonable precautions are being taken by IHM to see that there will be no legal problems. Thank you for alerting us to the pitfalls in a project like this. No, you were not being a kill joy at all.

    @everybody.
    I am truly gratified to note that this idea is being unanimously welcomed and that, while permissions from all the bloggers haven’t come in so far, no one has actually written in withholding permission.

    IHM is actively following up with with the authors for the necessary permissions and also with publishers for bringing out the publication, while I am polishing up and also embellishing the draft manuscript.

    Posted for everyone’s information.
    Regards
    GV

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  22. I’m sorry to say that since I had that up on my blog, I’ve signed a publishing contract with an international publisher, and had to ensure all my posts that were included in my book were taken down from my site; that was one of them. I don’t have any objection to it being used, however that permission has to come from my publisher. I’ve sent them your details, but until you hear from them, I would ask that you please not use anything of mine in a publication, be it e-book or other….sorry….

    I did write you an email and tell you this, but I haven’t heard back from you; can you please confirm you have rec’d this email? Thank you!

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  23. I’m sure you can include the site name and the article name in the book, and refer to the published book “Lost & Found in India,” though….you’ll no doubt hear from my publisher….good luck with the e-book, sounds good 🙂

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    • Noted
      I will remove your post too, just as I did for Manasa.
      I will merely mention the references like I did for Manasa.
      Thanks for responding in time.
      In case we get an okay from your publisher in time, we will re include it.
      Regards
      GV

      Like

      • Good news GV!!
        I hope it’s in time…
        This is a letter from my publisher:
        ____________

        Date: 2 January 2012 4:24:20 PM GMT+05:30
        To: xxxxx
        Subject: RE: [LOST and FOUND in INDIA] New comment on A Little Bit of Laudanum in My Life….

        Many thanks for your email. I had discussed this with Mr Chopra. Yes, you could give permission to them to include this particular chapter in their e-book only if they give due credit to the book – Lost and Found in India under publication with Hay House Publishers India Pvt Ltd.

        Best wishes,

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  24. Hi IHM, Been off the blogosphere lately. Thrilled to know my entries were liked and would be thrilled to have them included in the ebook 🙂
    Great initiative to compile an ebook. Am looking forward to it 🙂

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  25. um…..i know this will sound horribly un-tech-savvy…especially for a blogger, but how on earth do i go about putting the TRBA badge on my blog? have not the faintest….. HELP!

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  26. Hi IHM,

    I have recently been reading your blog and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading and commenting on various blogs.

    Just wanted to request you incase I can have a copy of this e book, would love to read it.

    Like

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