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Wise Words with Eric Hellman

Wise Words

Founder of e-book crowdfunding site, Unglue.it, shares his insights into avoiding the restrictions of digital publishing rights.

Founder of the open access book site, Unglue.it, Eric Hellman gained a Ph.D from Stanford University before working as a Library Technologist at a company called Openly Informatics, which seeks to encourage academics, researchers and other sector professionals to share their knowledge in one database. Taking his passion for open access to knowledge, he went on to form Unglue.it in May of this year, having experienced the frustrations of digital licensing limits firsthand through his library work. Unglue.it works by encouraging users to suggest a book that they would like to be able to freely access without legal restraints, and if enough people donate towards this campaign then Unglue.it obtains a Creative Commons licence for the book. This then makes it freely available for all the users who have donated. These participants can subsequently share the book digitally, online and through their social networks. Unglue.it recently hit a stumbling block when Amazon ceased to provide payment services for the startup, stating that they had decided against ‘boarding fresh crowdfunding accounts at this time’. However, the team are currently working on a new payment processing model and have already successfully funded one book, ‘Oral Literature in Africa’. We caught up with Eric to see how his new endeavor was coming along following these developments.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
6. What motivates you to keep going?
You mean there’s an alternative?
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
5. What drove you crazy when building your business?
Having smart, creative people working for you is simultaneously a great joy and a great stress.
6. What motivates you to keep going?
You mean there’s an alternative?
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
4. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Being married to someone with a real job and good health insurance.
5. What drove you crazy when building your business?
Having smart, creative people working for you is simultaneously a great joy and a great stress.
6. What motivates you to keep going?
You mean there’s an alternative?
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
3. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on Unglue.it?
I’m writing this at the Jersey Shore! But the key to a home office is to get exercise every day. I’ll either run three miles, swim or play tennis.
4. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Being married to someone with a real job and good health insurance.
5. What drove you crazy when building your business?
Having smart, creative people working for you is simultaneously a great joy and a great stress.
6. What motivates you to keep going?
You mean there’s an alternative?
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
2. Can you describe a typical working day?
We’re a company without an office, so the workday centers around our chatroom, twitter, email, github. Starbucks, too.
3. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on Unglue.it?
I’m writing this at the Jersey Shore! But the key to a home office is to get exercise every day. I’ll either run three miles, swim or play tennis.
4. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Being married to someone with a real job and good health insurance.
5. What drove you crazy when building your business?
Having smart, creative people working for you is simultaneously a great joy and a great stress.
6. What motivates you to keep going?
You mean there’s an alternative?
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here
1. Where did the idea for Unglue.it come from?
The idea for Unglue.it came from studying the problem of e-books in libraries. Did you know that four of the big six US publishers won’t let libraries lend the ebooks they publish, that the fifth expires the book on the 26th lend, and the sixth charges libraries 3x list price for a copy?
2. Can you describe a typical working day?
We’re a company without an office, so the workday centers around our chatroom, twitter, email, github. Starbucks, too.
3. How do you unwind or relax when you’re not working on Unglue.it?
I’m writing this at the Jersey Shore! But the key to a home office is to get exercise every day. I’ll either run three miles, swim or play tennis.
4. What’s the secret ingredient to success as an entrepreneur?
Being married to someone with a real job and good health insurance.
5. What drove you crazy when building your business?
Having smart, creative people working for you is simultaneously a great joy and a great stress.
6. What motivates you to keep going?
You mean there’s an alternative?
7. If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Unglue.it is my second start. After my first, I vowed not to do it again unless I could first convince some co-founders.
8. Where do you see your business in five years, and how will you get there?
10,000 unglued books would be nice
9. If you weren’t working on Unglue.it, what would you be doing?
Blogging
10. Tell Springwise a secret…
Most of the books I read, I buy used.
11. Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one said it would be easy.
Thanks Eric!
You can read more about Unglue.it here or visit the Unglue.it website here