Feedback

X

Frequently Asked Questions

Help! My question isn't covered in the FAQs!
Please email us at support@gluejar.com. We want to make sure everything on the site runs as smoothly as possible. Thanks for helping us do that.

Basics

How It Works

What is Unglue.it?
Unglue.it is a a place for individuals and institutions to join together to make ebooks free to the world. We work together with authors, publishers, or other rights holders who want their ebooks to be free but also want to be able to earn a living doing so. We use Creative Commons licensing as an enabling tool to "unglue" the ebooks.
What are Ungluing Campaigns?
We have three types of Ungluing Campaigns: Pledge Campaigns, Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns and Thanks-for-Ungluing campaigns.
  • In a Pledge Campaign, book lovers pledge their support for ungluing a book. If enough support is found to reach the goal (and only then), the supporter's credit cards are charged, and an unglued ebook is released.
  • In a Buy-to-Unglue Campaign, every ebook copy sold moves the book's ungluing date closer to the present. And you can donate ebooks to your local library- that's something you can't do in the Kindle or Apple Stores!
  • In a Thanks-for-Ungluing Campaign, the ebook is already released with a Creative Commons license. Supporters can express their thanks by paying what they wish for the license and the ebook.
What is Crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding is collectively pooling contributions (or pledges) to support some cause. Using the internet for coordination means that complete strangers can work together, drawn by a common cause. This also means the number of supporters can be vast, so individual contributions can be as large or as small as people are comfortable with, and still add up to enough to do something amazing.

Want to see some examples? Kickstarter lets artists and inventors solicit funds to make their projects a reality. For instance, webcomic artist Rich Burlew sought $57,750 to reprint his comics in paper form -- and raised close to a million.

In other words, crowdfunding is working together to support something you love. By pooling resources, big and small, from all over the world, we can make huge things happen.
What does it cost?
Unglue.it is free to join. Many of the things you can do here -- discovering books, adding them to your ebook list, downloading unglued books, commenting, sharing -- are free too.

If you choose to support a Pledge Campaign, you may pledge whatever amount you're comfortable with. Your credit card will only be charged if the campaign reaches its goal price.

If you choose to buy or download an unglue.it ebook, you can read it anywhere you like - there's no restrictive DRM.

If you hold the electronic rights to a book, starting campaigns is free, too. You only pay Unglue.it a fraction of your revenue. For the basics on campaigns, see the FAQ on Campaigns; for more details, see the FAQ for Rights Holders.
Who can use Unglue.it?
Anyone! We're located in the United States, but we welcome participants from all over the world.

To fund a campaign, or buy an ebook, you'll need a valid credit card. To start a campaign, you'll need to establish yourself with us as a rights holder, including demonstrating that you have the rights to the content you want to unglue. See the FAQs for Rights Holders for more.
Why should I support a book at Unglue.it when I can just buy it somewhere else?
When you buy a book, you get a copy for yourself. When you unglue it, you give a copy to yourself, reward its creators and contribute towards making it free to everyone.
What do I get when I unglue a book?
You get a better ebook. Your unglued ebook has no restrictive DRM: you can put it on any device you want, in any format you want. You can read it on the network or off, with no one tracking your reading.

You may get premiums as part of a Pledge Campaign, depending on the amount you pledge. Each Pledge Campaign has its own set.
Does Unglue.it own the copyright of unglued books?
No. When you unglue a book, the copyright stays with its current owner. Unglue.it does not buy copyrights. A Creative Commons license is a licensing agreement. As with other licensing agreements, it grants certain rights to others but does not affect the status of the copyright.

Just like many traditional publishing transactions, ungluing is about licensing rights. We use Creative Commons licenses which allow creators to choose the ways in which their works can be copied, shared and re-used.

If you are a copyright holder, you retain your copyright when you unglue a book. Creative Commons licenses are non-exclusive, so you also retain the right to enter into separate licensing agreements. You can read more about these licenses at the Creative Commons FAQ.
If I'm a rights holder and my book is unglued, does that mean I can never make money from it again?
No! You are free to enter into additional licensing agreements for other, non-unglued, editions of the work, including translation and film rights. You may continue to sell both print and ebook editions. You may use your unglued books as free samples to market your other works -- for instance, later works in the same series. You can use them to attract fans who may be interested in your speaking engagements, merchandise, or other materials. You absolutely may continue to profit from ungluing books -- and we hope you do!
Why do authors, publishers, and other rights holders want their books unglued?
Lots of reasons:
  • To publicize their other books, gain new fans, or otherwise increase the value of an author's brand.
  • To get income from books that are no longer in print.
  • To have a digital strategy that pays for itself, even if they don't have expertise in producing ebooks.
  • To advance a cause, add to the public conversation, or increase human knowledge.
  • To leave a legacy that enriches everyone, now and in the future.
Does Unglue.it publish books? Can I self-publish here?
Unglue.it is not a publisher. If you self-publish, Unglue.it can help you distribute your ebooks, if they meet our technical quality standards.
What's a rights holder? How can I tell if I'm one?
A rights holder is the person (or entity) that holds the legal right to copy, distribute, or sell a book in some way. There may be one entity with all the rights to a work, or the rights may be split up among different entities: for example, one who publishes the print edition in the United States, another who publishes the print edition in the EU, another who holds electronic rights, et cetera. For ungluing purposes, the rights holder is the entity who has uncontested worldwide commercial rights to a work.

If you have written a book and not signed any contracts about it, you hold all the rights. If you have signed a contract with a publisher to produce, distribute, publish, or sell your work in a particular format or a particular territory, whether or not you still hold rights depends on the language of that contract. We encourage you to check your contracts. It may be in your interest to explore launching an Unglue.it campaign jointly with your publisher.

If you haven't written a book but you have had business or family relationships with someone who has, it's possible that you are a rights holder (for instance, you may have inherited rights from the author's estate, or your company may have acquired them during a merger). Again, this all depends on the specific language of your contracts. We encourage you to read them closely. Unglue.it cannot provide legal advice.

If you believe you are a rights holder and would like to your works to be unglued, please contact us at rights@gluejar.com.
I know a book that should be unglued.
Great! Find it in our database (using the search box above) and add it to your favorites, so we know it should be on our list, too. And encourage your friends to add it to their favorites. The more people that fave a book on Unglue.it, the more attractive it will be for authors and publishers to launch an ungluing campaign. You can also contact us at rights@gluejar.com.
I know a book that should be unglued, and I own the commercial rights.
Fabulous! Please refer to the FAQ for Rights Holders and then contact us at rights@gluejar.com. Let's talk.
Is there a widget that can be put on my own site to share my favorite books or campaigns?
Yes! Every book page has an "Embed" option. Click that and copy/paste the HTML code wherever you like.

Your Account

I forgot my password. What do I do?
Click on this forgot your password link (you can also find it at the bottom of the sign in page). Enter the email address you use for your account and we'll send you an email to help you reset your password.
I never received an activation email after I signed up, or my activation email isn't working. What do I do?
Check your spam folder for mail from notices@gluejar.com. If that doesn't work, contact us at support@gluejar.com.
How do I connect my Twitter, Facebook, GoodReads, and/or LibraryThing accounts? How can I link to my personal web site?
Click on the edit icon: Edit Your Profileat the top right of your user page. (If you're logged in, your profile page is here.) Some new options will appear. You can enter your personal URL and your LibraryThing username here. There are one-click options to connect your Twitter, Facebook, and GoodReads accounts. (You'll be asked to log in to those accounts, if you aren't logged in already.) Make sure to click "Save Settings".
Why should I connect those accounts?
If you connect your Facebook or Twitter accounts, we'll use your user pics from those sites for your avatar here. If you connect to LibraryThing or GoodReads, you can import your books there onto your favorites list here, using the My Profile area. And we'll display book-specific and you-specific links to those sites for you.
I don't want to connect my accounts. Do I have to?
Nope.
How can I change my profile name or password, or the email address associated with my account?
At the bottom of every page there's a link to an account editing page where you can change your profile name, password, and email.
How do I subscribe to, or unsubscribe from, emails I receive from Unglue.it?
Make sure you're logged in and go to the Notification Settings page.

If you receive our newsletter, there's a link at the bottom of every message to manage your preferences. If you don't and would like to, you can sign up here.
Is my personal information shared?
Short version: no, except as absolutely required to deliver services you have opted into. If you have pledged to a campaign and are owed a premium, we will share your email with campaign managers so that they can deliver premiums to you; you are not required to share any further information and they are required to comply with our privacy policy in handling your information. We do use third-party providers to support some of our business functions, but they are only allowed to use your information in order to enable your use of the service. For the long version, please read our privacy policy.

The Company

How can I contact Unglue.it?
For support requests, support@gluejar.com. For general inquiries, use our Ask Questions Frequently account, aqf@gluejar.com. For rights inquiries, rights@gluejar.com. Media requests, press@gluejar.com
Who is Unglue.it?
We are a small group that believes strongly that ebooks can make the world richer in new and diverse ways, and that we all benefit from the hard work of their creators. We come from the worlds of entrepreneurship, linked data, physics, publishing, education, and library science, to name a few. You can learn more about us at our about page or our Unglue.it supporter profiles: Eric Hellman, Amanda Mecke and Raymond Yee. Our alumni include Luc Lewitanski and Andromeda Yelton.
Are you a non-profit company?
No. Gluejar, the parent company of Unglue.it, is a for-profit company with a public-spirited mission. We work with both non-profit and commercial partners.
Why does Unglue.it exist?
Because legal stickiness means you can't reliably lend or share your ebooks, borrow them from the library, or read them on the device of your choice. Because -- like public radio -- ebooks are expensive to create but cheap to distribute, so covering their fixed costs and reasonable profit up front can be an appealing system for authors, publishers, readers, and libraries. Because we all have books we love so much we want to give them to the world.

Campaigns

Thanks-for-Ungluing Campaigns:

Reward the courageous creators who've made their ebooks free to all.
Why Pay for Free eBooks?
If you want to reward the creators of an ebook, why not pay for a book? If you want to encourage other creators to make their books free, reward the creators who have already done so! Say thanks for ungluing the ebooks.
What is Thanks-for-Ungluing?
Thanks-for-Ungluing lets readers say thank you for free ebooks. The program is designed to help rights holders promote and benefit from their Creative Commons licensed ebooks. Creators participating in the Thanks-for-Ungluing program can request payment for ebooks on a pay-what-you-want basis. They set suggested prices as well as metadata and descriptions for their books.
How much of my "Thank You" contribution goes to the Creators?
There’s no charge creators to join. Unglue.it charge $0.25 + 8%, which includes credit card fees. So if you pay $1 for a book, 67 cents goes to the creator (or whoever holds commercial rights), and 33 cents, the entirety of our fee, goes to pay bank network fees. If you pay $10 for a book, the split is $8.95 for the creator, $0.60 for the bank network, and $0.35 to support unglue.it. Unglue.it doesn't process contributions less than $1.
What file formats are supported?
The website is designed to work with pdf, epub, and mobi.
Why should libraries support Thanks-for-Ungluing books?
Libraries that participate in Thanks-for-Ungluing campaigns make these books more accessible to their users. In addition:
  1. Libraries receive proof of conveyance letters that can be used as evidence that the rights holder has conveyed the Creative Commons License. Unglue.it is careful to validate the rights claims of the participating creators.
  2. Unglue.it users that have joined a library participating in unglue.it are never asked for contributions if their library has already done so.
  3. Catalog records will be available for all books participating in Thanks-for-Ungluing.
Where are the files hosted?
We prefer to link to files served from the Internet Archive, which has proven to be stable, reliable, and well managed.
Can self-published authors participate?
Yes, as long as we can confirm that they are the rights holder for the book and that the ebook files meet industry standards.

Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns

Read the ebook now, help to make if available to all in the future. The eBook wants to be free!
How is Buying an eBook at Unglue.it Different?
Buy-to-Unglue eBooks want to be free. But the people who create books have to make ends meet somehow. So they've chosen a funding level that will allow them to make the book free. When you buy an ebook at unglue.it, you're advancing the date at which the book will be free to everyone, but until then, the ebook is yours to enjoy. You can also buy the ebook for your library so that your neighbors can enjoy the ebook once you're done with it!
What can I do with a Buy-to-Unglue eBook?
There's no restrictive rights management on buy-to-unglue ebooks. That means you can put them on all your devices, and do the things you do with your print books. You're not allowed to publish or distribute them, but you'll be able to do that after the ungluing date. Once you've purchased a buy-to-unglue book, you can download it whenever you need it.
What is an Ungluing Date?
The ungluing date is the date a book gets released under a Creative Commons License. After the ungluing date, the ebook will be available for free at unglue.it, Internet Archive and any library, anywhere. You'll be able to make copies for all your friends, if that's what you want to do.
How does that work?
The rights holder for the book picks
  1. an initial ungluing date some time in the future, and
  2. a revenue goal
When an ebook license is purchased, the ungluing date is recalculated according to these formulae:
 
(days per dollar) = [(initial ungluing date) - (launch date)] / (campaign goal)

(current ungluing date) = (initial ungluing date) - (gross revenue)*(days per dollar)
Here's a calculator you can use to see how this works:

Starting with an Initial Ungluing Date of

and a revenue goal of $,

when the Book has earned ...
$ a new Ungluing Date

How do I tell what a book's ungluing date is?
The ungluing date is displayed on the campaign page for every Buy-to-Unglue book, and is printed inside every copy sold through Unglue.it on the license/copyright page. For ebooks sold anywhere else, you'll need to wait for the author(s) to die, and many decades after that, for the copyright to expire, even if the author or heirs no longer receive royalties or can’t be found.

Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns

Read the ebook now, help to make if available to all in the future. The eBook wants to be free!
How is Buying an eBook at Unglue.it Different?
Buy-to-Unglue eBooks want to be free. But the people who create books have to make ends meet somehow. So they've chosen a funding level that will allow them to make the book free. When you buy an ebook at unglue.it, you're advancing the date at which the book will be free to everyone, but until then, the ebook is yours to enjoy. You can also buy the ebook for your library so that your neighbors can enjoy the ebook once you're done with it!
What can I do with a Buy-to-Unglue eBook?
There's no restrictive rights management on buy-to-unglue ebooks. That means you can put them on all your devices, and do the things you do with your print books. You're not allowed to publish or distribute them, but you'll be able to do that after the ungluing date. Once you've purchased a buy-to-unglue book, you can download it whenever you need it.
What is an Ungluing Date?
The ungluing date is the date a book gets released under a Creative Commons License. After the ungluing date, the ebook will be available for free at unglue.it, Internet Archive and any library, anywhere. You'll be able to make copies for all your friends, if that's what you want to do.
How does that work?
The rights holder for the book picks
  1. an initial ungluing date some time in the future, and
  2. a revenue goal
When an ebook license is purchased, the ungluing date is recalculated according to these formulae:
 
(days per dollar) = [(initial ungluing date) - (launch date)] / (campaign goal)

(current ungluing date) = (initial ungluing date) - (gross revenue)*(days per dollar)
Here's a calculator you can use to see how this works:

Starting with an Initial Ungluing Date of

and a revenue goal of $,

when the Book has earned ...
$ a new Ungluing Date

How do I tell what a book's ungluing date is?
The ungluing date is displayed on the campaign page for every Buy-to-Unglue book, and is printed inside every copy sold through Unglue.it on the license/copyright page. For ebooks sold anywhere else, you'll need to wait for the author(s) to die, and many decades after that, for the copyright to expire, even if the author or heirs no longer receive royalties or can’t be found.

Thanks-for-Ungluing Campaigns:

Reward the courageous creators who've made their ebooks free to all.
Why Pay for Free eBooks?
If you want to reward the creators of an ebook, why not pay for a book? If you want to encourage other creators to make their books free, reward the creators who have already done so! Say thanks for ungluing the ebooks.
What is Thanks-for-Ungluing?
Thanks-for-Ungluing lets readers say thank you for free ebooks. The program is designed to help rights holders promote and benefit from their Creative Commons licensed ebooks. Creators participating in the Thanks-for-Ungluing program can request payment for ebooks on a pay-what-you-want basis. They set suggested prices as well as metadata and descriptions for their books.
How much of my "Thank You" contribution goes to the Creators?
There’s no charge creators to join. Unglue.it charge $0.25 + 8%, which includes credit card fees. So if you pay $1 for a book, 67 cents goes to the creator (or whoever holds commercial rights), and 33 cents, the entirety of our fee, goes to pay bank network fees. If you pay $10 for a book, the split is $8.95 for the creator, $0.60 for the bank network, and $0.35 to support unglue.it. Unglue.it doesn't process contributions less than $1.
What file formats are supported?
The website is designed to work with pdf, epub, and mobi.
Why should libraries support Thanks-for-Ungluing books?
Libraries that participate in Thanks-for-Ungluing campaigns make these books more accessible to their users. In addition:
  1. Libraries receive proof of conveyance letters that can be used as evidence that the rights holder has conveyed the Creative Commons License. Unglue.it is careful to validate the rights claims of the participating creators.
  2. Unglue.it users that have joined a library participating in unglue.it are never asked for contributions if their library has already done so.
  3. Catalog records will be available for all books participating in Thanks-for-Ungluing.
Where are the files hosted?
We prefer to link to files served from the Internet Archive, which has proven to be stable, reliable, and well managed.
Can self-published authors participate?
Yes, as long as we can confirm that they are the rights holder for the book and that the ebook files meet industry standards.

Pledge Campaigns

Support the books you've loved and make them free to everyone.
How does this work?
Pledge Campaigns are aimed at books that have already been published and have been read - and loved - by many. At some point they stop selling, except in used bookstores where the creators don't make a dime. A pledge campaign asks those who love the book to pledge their support together with other ungluers to buy out enough rights to make the ebook free. Think of it as a way to make the public domain happen sooner.
What the book I love doesn't have a campaign?
To show the creators of a book that there are people willing to support it, just "Fave" the book. If enough people show their support in this way, the creators will take notice. They may even offer "premiums" to encourage you to pledge!
How do I pledge?
When the creators of a book have been persuaded to launch a campaign, there will be a "Support" button on the book's unglue.it page. You'll be asked to select your premium and specify your pledge amount; choose how you'd like to be acknowledged, if your pledge is $25 or more; and enter your credit card information.
When will I be charged?
In most cases, your account will be charged by the end of the next business day after a Pledge Campaign succeeds. If a campaign doesn't succeed, you won't be charged.
What if I want to change or cancel a pledge?
You can modify your pledge by going to the book's page and clicking on the "Modify Pledge" button. (The "Support" button you clicked on to make a pledge is replaced by the "Modify Pledge" button after you pledge.)
What happens to my pledge if a Pledge Campaign does not succeed?
Your credit card will only be charged when campaigns succeed. If they do not, your pledge will expire and you will not be charged.
How will I be recognized for my support?
Pledgers are indicated on the book's page. In addition, when ungluing campaigns are successful, you'll be acknowledged in the unglued ebook as follows:
  • $25+ // Your name under "supporters" in the acknowledgements section.
  • $50+ // Your name and link to your profile page under "benefactors"
  • $100+ // Your name, link, and a dedication of your choice (140 characters max) under "bibliophiles"
Can people contribute anonymously?
Yes. Anonymous donors are included in the total count of supporters, but their names and links are not included in the acknowledgements.
If I have pledged to a suspended or withdrawn Pledge Campaign, what happens to my pledge?
Your pledge will time out according to its original time limit. If the campaign is resolved and reactivated before your pledge has timed out, your pledge will become active again. If the campaign is not reactivated before your pledge's time limit, your pledge will expire and you will not be charged. As always, you will only be charged if a campaign is successful, within its original time limit.
Is my contribution tax deductible?
If the campaign manager for the work you're supporting is a nonprofit, please contact them directly to inquire. Unglue.it cannot offer tax deductions.

Premiums

What are premiums?
Premiums are bonuses people get for supporting a successful Pledge Campaign, to thank them and incentivize them to pledge. If you've ever gotten a tote bag from NPR, you know what we're talking about.
Are premiums required?
No, but they're strongly encouraged for Pledge Campaigns. They are not available for Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns.
Who creates the premiums for each campaign?
The campaign manager (typically the author or publisher of the book).
Is there a minimum or maximum for how much a premium can cost?
There's a $1 minimum and a $2000 maximum.

Unglued Ebooks

General Questions

So what is an unglued ebook?
An unglued ebook is a book that's added a Creative Commons license, after payments to the author, publisher, or other rights holder.

What does this mean for you? If you're a book lover, you can read unglued ebooks for free, on the device of your choice, in the format of your choice, and share them with all your friends. If you're a library, you can lend them to your patrons with no checkout limits or simultaneous user restrictions, and preserve them however you think best. If you're a rights holder, you get a payments in lieu of further royalties, while retaining copyright and all interests in your work.
Is the unglued ebook edition the same as one of the existing editions?
Not necessarily. Sometimes the existing editions include content that we can't get the rights to include in the unglued ebook, especially cover art or illustrations. Sometimes the unglued ebook edition will have improvements, like copy-editing fixes or bonus features. These differences, if any, will be specified in the More... tab of the campaign page. In addition, unglued ebooks may include acknowledgements of supporters and information on their Creative Commons license.
How much does a book need to earn?
For Pledge and Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns, the author or publisher sets an earnings total for making the book free. Once you and your fellow ungluers raise enough money to meet that price through pledges or spend enough money on paid copies, the unglued ebook becomes available at no charge, for everyone, everywhere! Thanks-for-Ungluing books can be downloaded for free now, but the creators would love to have your support.
Will Unglue.it have campaigns for all kinds of books?
Yes. You choose what books to support.
Does an unglued book have to be out-of-print?
No. Unglued books can be anything in copyright, whether 75 years or 7 days old, whether they sell in paperback or hardcover and or can only be found in used bookstores -- or nowhere. But the copyright owners and any one else with a claim on the book need to agree.
Will Unglue.it help raise funds for books not yet written?
No. There are other crowdfunding sites devoted to the creative process, and we encourage you to investigate them. Once your book is ready to sell as an ebook, we'd love to talk to you.

Using Your Unglued Ebook

What can I do, legally, with an unglued ebook? What can I not do?
All unglued ebooks are released under a Creative Commons license. The rights holder chooses which Creative Commons license to apply. Books that we distribute in a Buy-to-Unglue Campaign also have creative commons licenses, but the effective date of these licenses is set in the future.

Creative Commons licenses mean that once the license is effective you can: make copies; keep them for as long as you like; shift them to other formats (like .mobi or PDF); share them with friends or on the internet; download them for free.

Under NC (non-commercial) licenses, you cannot: sell unglued ebooks, or otherwise use them commercially, without permission from the rights holder.

Under ND (no derivatives) licenses, you cannot: make derivative works, such as translations or movies, without permission from the rights holder;

Under all CC licenses (except CC0), you cannot: remove the author's name from the book, or otherwise pass it off as someone else's work; or remove or change the CC license.
What does non-commercial mean under Creative Commons?
Creative Commons doesn't define "commercial" thoroughly (though it's worth reading what they have to say on the topic). So as part of the Unglue.it process, ungluing rights holders agree that "For purposes of interpreting the CC License, Rights Holder agrees that 'non-commercial' use shall include, without limitation, distribution by a commercial entity without charge for access to the Work."

Unglue.it can't provide legal advice about how to interpret Creative Commons licenses, and we encourage you to read about the licenses yourself and, if necessary, seek qualified legal advice.
Are the unglued ebooks compatible with my device? Do I need to own an ereader, like a Kindle or a Nook, to read them?
Unglued ebooks are distributed with NO RESTRICTIVE DRM, so they'll work on Kindle, iPad, Kobo, Nook, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux... you get the idea. Whether you have an ereader, a tablet, a desktop or laptop computer, or a smartphone, there are reading apps that work for you. Ebook editions issued through Unglue.it will be available in ePub format. If this format doesn't work for you, today or in the future, you are welcome to shift unglued books to one that does, and to copy and distribute it in that format.
Do I need to have a library card to read an unglued ebook?
No. (Though we hope you have a library card anyway!)

If your library has bought an ebook as part of a Buy-to-Unglue Campaign, you may need your library card if you want to borrow them.
How long do I have to read my unglued book? When does it expire?
If you're reading a book purchased from unglue.it by a library, your borrowing license expires after 2 weeks. But otherwise there's no expiration. And you delete the file on the honor system.

If you're reading a book you've purchased from unglue.it, you may keep it as long as you like. There's no need to return it, and it won't stop working after some deadline. You own it.

If you're reading a book that's been unglued, you can keep the file forever AND you can make copies for friends.
Can I download ebooks directly from Unglue.it?
If you've purchased an ebook from unglue.it, you'll by able to download it through the website. All formats are included (where available), and you can download the ebooks for your personal use as many times as you need to.

Unglue.it also provides links to download previously unglued books, creative commons licensed books, and public domain ebooks. You don't need our permission to host these free ebooks on your own site.

Ungluing and Copyright

Why does an unglued book have to be in copyright?
Because books out of copyright are already free for you to copy, remix, and share! If a book is in the public domain, it doesn't need to be unglued.
How can I tell if a book is in copyright or not?
Unfortunately, it can be complicated -- which is why Unglue.it wants to simplify things, by making unglued ebooks unambiguously legal to use in certain ways. The laws governing copyright and the public domain vary by country, so a book can be copyrighted in one place and not in another. In the United States, the Library Copyright Slider gives a quick estimate.

Unglue.it signs agreements assuring the copyright status of every work we unglue, so you can be confident when reading and sharing an unglued ebook.
Unglue.it lists a book that I know is already Creative Commons licensed or available in the public domain. How can I get the link included?
If you are logged in to Unglue.it, the "Rights" page for every work lists the edition we know about. There a link for every edition that you can use to tell us about Creative Commons or public domain downloads. We do require that these books be hosted at certain known, reputable repositories: Internet Archive, Wikisources, Hathi Trust, Project Gutenberg, or Google Books.

For Rights Holders

Becoming Authorized

Who is eligible to start a campaign or sell ebooks on Unglue.it?
To start a campaign, you need to be a verified rights holder who has signed a Platform Services Agreement with us.
What do I need to do to become an authorized Rights Holder on Unglue.it?
Contact our Rights Holder Relations team, rights@gluejar.com, to discuss signing our Platform Services Agreement (PSA), setting a revenue goal, and running a campaign on Unglue.it to release your book under a Creative Commons license, or to raise money for a book you've already released under such a license.
I haven't signed an agreement, but my books are listed on Unglue.it. What's going on?
If your book is listed on Unglue.it, it's because an unglue.it user has indicated some interested in the book. Perhaps your book has been added to a user's favorites list. Users can also use the site to post links to Creative Commons licensed or public domain books. Unglue.it works with non-profit sites such as Internet Archive to improve their coverage and preservation of Creative Commons licensed books.
I didn't give you permission to offer my CC-licensed book for download. Why is it there?
When we don't have an agreement with a rights-holder, our download links lead to sites such as Internet Archive, Project Gutenberg, or Google Books that facilitate this linking and free use of the works by our users. We strive to keep our information accurate, so if the license we report is inaccurate, please let us know immediately. If for some reason you don't want us to provide download links, let us know using the "feedback" tab next to your book's page and we'll make a notation to that effect in our metadata. We may require evidence that you are authorized to act for the rights holders of the book.
Do I need to know the exact titles I might want to unglue before I sign the Platform Services Agreement?
No. You only need to agree to the terms under which you will use Unglue.it to raise money. You can decide which specific titles you wish to make available for licensing later. However, before you start a campaign, you must claim a specific title (through the More... tab of its book page) and plan how you will attract ungluers to pledge toward your goal.
Can I run more than one campaign?
You can run campaigns for as many, or as few, titles at a time as you like.

Claiming Works

How can I claim a work for which I am the rights holder?
On every book page there is a More... tab. If you have a signed Platform Services Agreement on file, one of the options on the More... tab will be "Claim This Work". If you represent more than one rights holder, choose the correct one for this work and click "Claim".

If you expect to see a "Claim" button and do not, either we do not have a PSA from you yet, or we have not yet verified and filed it. Please contact us at rights@gluejar.com.
Why should I claim my works?
You need to claim a work before you will be able to start a campaign for it. Additionally, we're adding features for verified rights holders which will help you show off your works and connect to your readers. Claiming your works will let you take advantage of these features in the future.
Where can I find a campaign page?
If you're looking for a specific book, search for it. The book's page becomes a campaign page when its campaign starts. Your bookmarks and widgets for that book will still work.

If you want to find an interesting campaign and don't have a specific book in mind, see the Explore sidebar (on almost any page except the FAQs) for some of our favorites.

Running Campaigns

What do I need to create a campaign?
First, you need to be an authorized rights holder with a signed Platform Services Agreement on file. Please contact rights@gluejar.com to start this process. Once we have your PSA on file, you'll be able to claim your works and you'll have access to tools for launching and monitoring campaigns. We'll be happy to walk you through the process personally.
Can I unglue only one of my books? Can I unglue all of them?
Yes! It's entirely up to you. Each Campaign is for a individual title and a separate fundraising parameters.
Can I raise any amount of money I want?
You can set any goal that you want in a Campaign. But don't be ridiculous! Unglue.it cannot guarantee that a goal will be reached.
What should I include in my campaign page?
Show the world why we should love your book. What makes it powerful, intriguing, moving, thought-provoking, important? How does it capture readers' imaginations, engage their minds, or connect to their emotions? Remind readers who loved the book why they loved it, and give people who haven't read it reasons they want to.

Pledge Campaigns

What should I offer as premiums for a Pledge Campaign?
Anything you think will get ungluers excited about supporting your work. Think about things that uniquely represent yourself or the work, that are appealing, and that you can deliver quickly and within your budget. For example, authors could consider offering Skype sessions as premiums for libraries or schools that might want to plan an event around the unglued book. And, of course, physical or digital editions of your other books are always popular.
What can be offered as a premium? What items are prohibited as premiums?
You can offer anything you are capable of delivering, so long as it is not illegal or otherwise restricted in the United States. For instance, your premiums may not include alcohol, drugs, or firearms. For full details, consult our Terms of Use.
Who is responsible for making sure a rights holder delivers premiums?
The rights holder.
How can I get my supporters' information (mailing address, T-shirt size, etc.) to fulfill premiums?
Unglue.it will share supporters' emails and the premiums they are owed with rights holders if, and only if, a campaign succeeds. Campaign managers can also message supporters via the website. If you need additional information to fulfill premiums, you may email ungluers directly. Rights holders are required to comply with the Unglue.it privacy policy.
How can supporters contact me?
If you'd like supporters to contact you directly, please set your contact email address in the campaign management area.
What is my responsibility for answering questions from supporters and non-supporters?
It's up to you. However, our experience watching and running crowdfunding campaigns suggests that you'll do best if you're engaged, prompt, and personable. In fact, don't just think in terms of answering questions (though you should absolutely do that) -- think about cultivating and contributing to the conversation.

Adding Media to a Campaign

How to add video

We strongly encourage you to include video that communicates directly with your supporters. To add a video:

  • Upload it to YouTube.
  • Underneath the video, click Share, then Embed.
  • In the embed options: click Use HTTPS.
  • In the Custom sizing area, enter a width of 445.
  • In the editor toolbar below, click Source.
  • Copy/paste the embed code from YouTube into your campaign below.
  • Click Source again to get back to the normal editing mode.

You'll see an IFRAME code in the editor where your video will go. The video will display normally on your campaign page.

Prefer screencasts? Here you go: how to embed a video in your campaign page.

How to add a PDF

This assumes that you have a (free) Google account.

  • Upload your PDF to Google Drive.
  • Click on the Share button.
  • Change the visibility to public on the web and click Save, then Done.
  • In the File menu, click the Embed this PDF option.
  • Copy the HTML code that pops up.
  • In the editor toolbar below, click Source.
  • Paste the HTML code from Google Drive in the box below.
  • Find the part of the code that says something like
    width="640"
    and change that to
    width="445"
    .
  • Click Source again to get back to the normal editing mode.

You'll see an IFRAME code in the editor where your PDF will go. The PDF will display normally on your campaign page.

Prefer screencasts? Here: how to embed a PDF in your campaign page (screencast)

Publicizing Campaigns

Can I contact my supporters directly?
Yes, when you're logged in as a campaign manager, you can contact supporters directly via the ungluers tab. You can also enter comments which are delivered to every supporter who hasn't opted out of comments.

We don't get other contact information, except as needed to fulfill premiums after successful campaigns. Supporters may voluntarily disclose certain contact information (such as Twitter handles) on their profile pages. We encourage you to be thoughtful in your use of this information.
How do I get feedback from supporters or fans about my campaign?
Ask them!

Also, pay attention to places they're talking about your campaign. This might be the Comments tab, a hashtag on Twitter, the comments section of your blog, a forum on your web site, your Facebook page, et cetera. You can use your campaign pitch to point them to these spaces, too. Read them regularly to see what people are saying, and to participate in the conversation.
How do I share my campaign?
On every campaign page, you can generate an HTML widget that you can embed wherever you like. It will automatically be updated with your campaign's progress. There are also links to share the page via email and social networks.

Have other ways you want to share? Your own blog, newsletter, or social media presence? Your friends, and their friends? Professional associations? Media contacts? Go for it!

Need more ideas? We're happy to work with rights holders personally to craft a campaign strategy.
How can I get my campaign featured on the home page or the Explore menu pages?
We automatically generate those lists from the books with the most (or most recent) wishes, pledges, and comments. The more people you can rally to show their love of your book, the more likely it is to be featured there.

Ebook Conversion

I am a copyright holder. Do I need to already have a digital file for a book I want to unglue?
For a Buy-to-Unglue Campaign, yes, you'll need to upload an epub file for each book. For Pledge Campaigns, no, you may run campaigns for books that exist only in print copies or are out of print. Any print book can be scanned to create a digital file that can then become an ePub-format unglued ebook. For Thanks-for-Ungluing campaigns, you can use ePub, Mobi, pdf and html files.
Will Unglue.it scan books and produce ePub files?
No. We can help you find third parties who will contract for conversion services.
Will Unglue.it raise money to help pay for conversion costs?
A Pledge campaign target should include conversion costs. For a Buy-to-Unglue and Thanks-for-Ungluing campaigns, you'll need to have pre-existing epub files.
What are the requirements for my ebook files?
  • For Thanks-For-Ungluing Campaigns, the rightsholder is responsible for providing valid, high-quality EPUB, MOBI, and PDF files.
  • For Buy-To-Unglue Campaigns and Pledge Campaigns ebook files should use the EPUB standard format format according to best practice at time of submission. At minimum, the files should pass the epubcheck tool. Exceptions will be made for content requiring more page layout than available in prevailing EPUB implementations; in those cases, the files will usually be PDF.
  • Files shall be compliant where ever reasonable with the QED inspection checklist specified at http://qed.digitalbookworld.com/why-qed/criteria
  • The file should have no more than 0.2 typographical or scanning errors per page of English text.
  • The file shall contain front matter which includes the following:
    • a list of ISBNs of other editions of the work
    • For Pledge Campaigns only
      1. the Creative Commons license selected for the campaign, formatted in accordance with best practices at http://wiki.creativecommons.org/Marking/Creators, and a statement that for the purposes of the license, "Non-Commercial" use shall include, but not be limited to, the distribution of the Work by a commercial entity without charge.
      2. an acknowledgement of Ungluers of the work, formatted in accordance with the premium descriptions on the Campaign page.
      3. The Unglue.it logo
      4. the text “CC edition release enabled by Unglue.it users” (including the hyperlink to the site)
      5. The Rights Holder must offer the schedule of Standard Premiums as described at at ( https://unglue.it/rightsholders/) in effect at the time of launching a Pledge Campaign.
    • For Buy-To-Unglue Campaigns, the Unglue.it platform will embed a personalized licensed statement into front matter for each delivered file
  • The cover graphic shall match any description given in the Campaign.
  • Any graphics which must be excluded from the released ebook shall be specified in the description given in the campaign.

Funding

What parameters are required for a campaign?
For a Pledge Campaign, you'll need to set funding goal and deadline. For a Buy-to-Unglue Campaign, you'll need a revenue goal and an initial effective date for the Creative Commons License. You'll also need to set prices for each type of license you plan to offer. For a Thanks-for-Ingluing campaign, you just need to decide on a suggested contribution.
Can I change my funding/revenue goal?
While a campaign is in progress you may lower, but not raise, your funding or revenue goal.
Can I change my deadline in a Pledge Campaign?
No.
Can I change the price for an ebook I'm offering for purchase?
Yes!
Are contributions refundable?
Unglue.it contributions are non-refundable. Once a campaign succeeds, supporters' credit cards will be charged the full amount of their pledge. However, they will not be charged until, and unless, the campaign succeeds. Before that time they may modify or cancel their pledges without charge. Buy-to-Unglue license purchases are not returnable or refundable by Unglue.it, but rights holders need to keep customers happy with respect to the products they buy, as customers are free to post comments on the work page.
What if an ungluer contests a charge?
Ungluers may contest charges, either with the payment processor or with their credit card issuer. Unglue.it is not liable for this and rights holders are liable for any chargebacks. We encourage rights holders to provide clear, timely communication to their supporters throughout the campaign to ensure they remember what they pledged to and why.
What happens if a supporter's credit card is declined?
Although credit cards are authorized at the time of pledging, a small percentage of cards will get voided between the time of authorization and the time the credit card is actually charged. Rights holders are responsible for any funding shortfall due to voided credit cards.
What happens if a buyer wants a refund?
Our policy is for 100% buyer satisfaction. We hold back a 30% reserve for 90 days to cover possible customer refunds.
Can I offer tax deductions to people who pledge to my campaign?
If you are a 501(c)3 or similar, please consult your own attorneys and accountants about the tax deductibility of ungluers' contributions. Unglue.it cannot offer tax deductions or advice.
How do I know when I have started fundraising?
Unglue.it will be in communication with you about when campaigns should go live. On your rights holder dashboard, you will be able to see all works you have claimed and the status of any associated campaigns.
When and how will I be paid?
  • For Pledge Campaigns: After we reach the threshold price Unglue.it will issue you a closing memo, which will cover your gross and net proceeds. Unglue.it will hold the proceeds until you deliver an ePub file meeting Unglue.it's quality standards, at which point Unglue.it will send you a check. If Unglue.it does not receive a suitable ePub file within 90 days, we will deduct conversion costs from your funds and release the rest to you.
  • For Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns and Thanks-for-Ungluing Campaigns: We make payments quarterly to rights holders who have accrued more than $100 in earnings. If we are able to set you up with ACH transfers, we will send payments more frequently. 70% of earnings accrue immediately; the rest accrues after 90 days.
What happens if my campaign reaches its funding goal before its deadline? Can campaigns raise more money than their goal?
Campaigns are scheduled to close at midnight Eastern (US) time of the day when they hit their funding threshold. They may continue to accrue pledges/sales up to that time, including funding past their goal.
What happens if my Pledge Campaign doesn't reach its funding goal by its deadline?
The campaign ends. Supporters' credit cards are not charged, so you are not paid and not obligated to release an unglued ebook.

If you're concerned a campaign may not reach its goal you have several options. You can lower the target price to a level more likely to succeed. Or you are welcome to run a second campaign at a later time, perhaps with a different goal, duration, and publicity strategy. We'd be happy to consult with you about this.
What happens if my Buy-to-Unglue Campaign doesn't reach its revenue goal by its termination?
Every sale moves a books ungluing date towards the present, and the ungluing date achieved survives the termination of your Buy-to-Unglue Campaign.
Is there a minimum funding goal?
Yes, the minimum funding goal is $500.
What fees does Unglue.it charge in a Pledge Campaign?
When a campaign succeeds, Unglue.it will deduct a 6% commission (or $60, whichever is greater) on the funds raised. Our payment processor also charges a separate small fee on each transaction, plus (where relevant) currency conversion costs. If you do not have a suitable ePub version of your book available, you will also need to cover ebook conversion costs; please price this into your goal for a campaign. Details are spelled out in the Platform Services Agreement that rights holders must sign before launching an Unglue.it campaign.
What fees does Unglue.it charge in a Buy-to-Unglue Campaign?
For Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns, Unglue.it charges (1) a flat 25% of of revenue from ebook licenses it provides through its site or through partner sites and (2) a per-transaction charge of $0.25. These amounts include payment processor fees and any fees due to partner sites.
What fees does Unglue.it charge in a Thanks-for-Ungluing Campaign?
For Buy-to-Unglue Campaigns, Unglue.it charges (1) a flat 8% of of revenue from "thanks" payments it receives through its site and (2) a per-transaction charge of $0.25. These amounts include payment processor fees.
Does it cost money to start a campaign on Unglue.it?
No.
Will I receive a 1099-K tax form?
Yes, Unglue.it will issue you one as required by law.

Rights

If I am an author with my book still in print, can I still start a campaign to unglue it?
This depends entirely on your original contract with your publisher. You should seek independent advice about your royalty clauses and the "Subsidiary Rights" clauses of your contract. The Authors' Guild provides guidance for its members.
If I am an author do I have to talk to my publisher or agent first?
It is your responsibility to get advice on the current status of any contracts you may have ever had for the right to publish your work, whether or not a book is in print now. Creative Commons licenses are media neutral and worldwide (English). You may need waivers from other parties who have exclusive licenses for this book.
If I am a publisher, but I do not have an ebook royalty in my contract, can I sign your Platform Services Agreement?
We can't interpret your particular contract regarding subsidiary rights and your ability to use a Creative Commons license. Please seek qualified independent advice regarding the terms of your contract. In any event, you will also want the author to cooperate with you on a successful fundraising campaign, and you can work together to meet the warranties of the PSA.
Are the copyright holder, and the rights holder who is eligible to start an Unglue.it campaign, the same person?
Not necessarily. If you are the author and copyright holder but have a contract with a publisher, the publisher may be the authorized Rights Holder with respect to commercial rights, and they may be able to sign a licensing agreement on your behalf. Again, you must get advice about your individual contract, especially subsidiary rights clauses and exclusivity.
Can I offer a book to be unglued even if I cannot include all the illustrations from the print edition?
Yes. If permission to reprint cannot not be obtained for items such as photographs, drawings, color plates, as well as quotations from lyrics and poetry, we can produce an unglued edition which leaves them out. You must indicate the difference between the editions on your Campaign page.
What impact does ungluing a book have on the rights status of my other editions?
The Creative Commons licenses are non-exclusive. They will apply only to the unglued edition, not to the print, audio, or any other editions. They does not affect the rights status of those other editions. If you use the no-derivative, noncommercial license (CC BY-NC-ND), no one else may sell your book or make derivatives unless you give them permission to do so.
Can an unglued ebook be issued only in the US?
No. An unglued ebook is released to the world. It uses a Creative Commons license which is territory-neutral. That is, the unglued ebook can be read by anyone, anywhere in the world, subject always to the limitations of the license.