Author Archive

LibriVox 8th Anniversary Podcast: New Beginning

Posted on August 10, 2013 by | Posted in For Volunteers, Librivox Community Podcast, News, Podcast | Comments: Comments Off on LibriVox 8th Anniversary Podcast: New Beginning

Listen to LibriVox Community Podcast #133 hosted by Ruth Golding (RuthieG).


Duration: 40:37

LibriVox 8th Anniversary: New Beginnings

Featuring Hobbit, francesb, moniaqua, WoollyBee, commonsparrow3, Piotrek81, Hugh McGuire and many more.

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0:00 Introduction

0:30 Back to the very beginning. Hugh interviewed by Paula Berinstein on The Writing Show.

1:31 The early years and the evolution of LibriVox up to the present

6:22 Imminent changes (very new LibriVoxers may wish to skip this)

8:22 Interviews with New Volunteers francesb, moniaqua and WoollyBee (Hobbit)

18:53 All sorts of people are LibriVoxers!

19:38 My experiences at LibriVox: (commonsparrow3)

22:22 Branching out into new areas of LibriVox: (piotrek81)

25:13 Piotrek81’s group project, The Deluge

25:41 A common misconception: readers don’t make slips or have mishaps while recording – oh really?

26:27 Blooper Reel (WoollyBee)

31:29 A few words about the LibriVox 8th Anniversary Collection

32:31 Back to… the future? (Hugh McGuire and Paula Berinstein)

33:05 Birthday wishes and thanks (Hugh)

36:29 A gentle reminder to people about the fund-raising drive.

37:03 The LibriVox 8th Anniversary Song (Hobbit, Darvinia, TriciaG, Availle, lezer, Tlaloc, BellonaTimes, Loveday, commonsparrow3, Rapunzelina, JemmaBlythe, moniaqua, carolb, philchenevert, ppcunningham, Cori, kathrinee, BookAngel7, francesb, MaryAnnSpiegel, ShiNeko, downey8kids, WoollyBee, RuthieG, Peter Why)

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We are interested in whatever feedback – positive or constructively critical – anyone has about our podcasts. Add a comment below or pop over to this forum thread.

Any member of the community who has contributed readings to the LibriVox catalog can host a podcast and is most welcome to do so. Visit this thread on the forum to express an interest and float your ideas.

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To Subscribe to the Librivox Community Podcast, go to:

Or hit this itunes link to get you to the subscribe page:

Recent past LibriVox Community Podcast files can be found at our spot on: and archived shows for previous years can be found at: 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011, and 2012.

Archived shownotes for the Community Podcast can be found at:

And the rss feed for those shownotes is:


LibriVox Languages

Posted on July 13, 2013 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Books, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, News | Comments: Comments Off on LibriVox Languages

LibriVox is eight, it is! And we are happy to celebrate the great diversity of our readers with the following 10 non-English gems from our catalog.

Si Amboy ang Palahubog, by Vicente Rama, tells the story of drunkard Amboy and how he is willing to sacrifice his family for his great love alcohol. The book is written in Bisaya, one of the languages of the Philippines.

An important work of Tamil literature is the Tiruppavai by Andal. In its 30 stanzas, the lord Vishnu is praised, and the poetry is traditionally recited by unmarried girls in order to pray for a happy marriage.

The Ukrainian Leonid Glibov has written a great number of original Fables relating to his fatherland. Here, we present a selection – more than 100 of them – in their original language.

Vladimir Jabotinski was a Russian author whose writings greatly influenced the Zionist movement in his country. Jews and Russia is a collection of his articles written from 1903 – 1912.

The Jewish writer Uri Nissan Gnessin relates in Etsel the tragic story of a young man befallen by a strange heart disease so that he is unable to give or even receive love. This book is written and read in Hebrew.

Love, truth, goodness, and morality are themes of the Legends from the Old Mountain. The Bulgarian writer Yordan Yovkov tells in ten short stories the old legends from the Balkans.

A more spiritual direction takes Al Mawardi in his book Kitab Adab al Dunya w’al Din. He explains – in Arabic – his views on Islamic philosophy, and explores topics like “Ethics of Life, Religion, and Spirit.”

Somewhat more exotic questions like “What is the strange smell in a place full of roses?” are answered in Na wzgórzu róż, containing six stories by Polish writer Stefan Grabiński.

The Swedish author Anders Ramsay tells about his experiences with aristocratic life in the 19th century and the Finnish industrialization in his autobiography Från barnaår till silfverhår (From Childyears to Silverhair).

La Locandiera is considered Carlo Goldoni’s masterpiece. The three act comedy tells about a female innkeeper who tries to keep the advances of her male customers at bay… This is a dramatic reading with a full Italian cast.

Enjoy – and Happy 8th birthday, LibriVox!


LibriVox Needs Your Help

Posted on July 3, 2013 by | Posted in about LibriVox, News | Comments: Comments Off on LibriVox Needs Your Help

Dear LibriVox Friends,

LibriVox needs your help. We have just launched a new funding drive, and if you’d like to donate without hearing all the rest you can do so here:

Donate to LibriVox.

For those who need more convincing…

LibriVox History

LibriVox was started in August 2005 by a ragtag bunch of book lovers who’d never met each other, who thought it might be fun to make audio versions of public domain books and give them away for free on the Internet. By October of 2005 we shocked ourselves by producing eight (8!) books, and had twenty more on the go, and some 200 volunteers signed up to help us out.

Sometime around then, we then formalized our mission:

“To make all books in the public domain available, for free, in audio format on the Internet.”

… and we got to work figuring out how to help more people make free public domain audiobooks.

7,000 Audiobooks, 100 Million Downloads

Since then, some 40,000 souls have registered on our volunteer forum, and we’ve gone on to publish almost 7,000 free public domain audiobooks, in 29 different languages. Our books have been downloaded well over 100 million times (last time we took stock of download numbers was more than a year ago!). Some of our most popular titles have more than a million downloads.

We continue to work towards our goal of recording every public domain audiobook, with almost no budget at all, with day-to-day LibriVox activities — recording and making available public domain audiobooks — continuing to run with no paid staff, but instead powered by thousands of dedicated volunteers.

LibriVox: an Oasis of Bookishness on the Internet

LibriVox has always been a kind of oasis on the Internet.

We have the most polite and friendly Internet Forum most people have ever visited.

We don’t have a foundation, or professional fundraisers, or staff toiling away somewhere. We don’t have offices, we don’t have lobbyists. We’ve been taken under the wing of the Internet Archive (for legal and financial reasons), but we operate completely independently, and we like it that way.

What we like doing is making audiobooks of public domain books, and giving them away for free to anyone who wants them.

And we ask that you consider helping out so that we can focus on that — and not on raising money!

Our First Appeal for Help, Two Years Ago

Two years ago, LibriVox servers were hacked, which resulted in much pain and suffering as we took stock of our systems, and tried to close up security holes, and keep making audiobooks. We took a close look at the mishmash of software — much of it built by LibriVox volunteers — that keeps LibriVox running. It became clear that we needed to do a full revamp of our creaking software infrastructure, and that we would need more than volunteers to do this work. And further, we had to move to new, beefier servers — which we had to pay for.

We appealed to the LibriVox community to raise some money, and were successful – this money went mostly towards paying for servers (which ended up being more expensive than expected).

The good news is that LibriVox infrastructure is now hosted on Internet Archive — for free. So we no longer have direct server costs. (Though we do need to keep a system administrator on retainer to keep the systems running as smoothly as we can).

Mellon Foundation Grant, A Year Ago

Last year we applied for, and got, an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation grant to support a full rebuild of the LibriVox infrastructure, which will be unveiled very soon.

We Need Your Help Again

But now we need your help again.

Our technical infrastructure work was very big in scope. We have rebuilt all the software that runs our project management systems, our cataloging system, and our book uploading systems; in addition, we’ve done a complete redesign & implementation of our website. All this will be revealed to the public shortly… but there is more work to do.

We’d like your help to raise money to support the following things:
* technical infrastructure additions that were outside the scope of what we could achieve with the Mellon grant
* ongoing system administration costs
* ongoing development support and improvements on our new software systems
* ensuring the LibriVox site is properly internationalized
* to make sure that volunteers don’t need to pay out of pocket for big-ticket items that need paying for

Our 8-year anniversary is coming up, on August 10, 2013.

Our target is to raise $50,000 by then. Can you help?

Beyond August 10, we will continue to have a donation page on LibriVox (something we have never had before)… which we hope will bring in a modest amount of donations, enough to cover our ongoing costs.

This is made easier if we have a cushion in the bank so that LibriVox volunteers don’t have to stay up at night worrying about how this or that will be paid for.

Can You Help?

So, what do you say?

Whether you’ve listened to one LibriVox book, or many, a small donation will go a long way to helping us reach our goal. That has always been the spirit of LibriVox: if many contribute a little, we can build something big. (Of course, larger donations will also be received with enthusiasm if you have the means).

And, even if you’ve never listened to a LibriVox book, but you believe in making books accessible to the whole world, and you’d like to support our work … well, we couldn’t be more grateful to you.

Please visit our Donate Page, and please spread the word to anyone you think might be interested — by Email, Twitter or Facebook.

And while you are at it, maybe you’d like to help us make some more public domain audiobooks? Join us … It’s fun!

Oh, and if you haven’t yet… maybe you’d like to…

Donate to LibriVox.

Thank you!

Hugh McGuire
Founder, LibriVox

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Through Time and Space

Posted on June 1, 2013 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Books, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, News | Comments: Comments Off on Through Time and Space

Summertime – the perfect excuse for travelling and going somewhere new. Go to infinity or eternity – and beyond – with 10 gems from our catalog.

Aristotle wrote one of the first “scientific” works On the Heavens, where he proves that the earth is a sphere. He also introduces his theory of gravity – all things fall towards the center of the universe – and talks about a new idea of one of his colleagues: atoms.

More than two millennia later, Alfred North Whitehead refers to him as well as to Einstein to show that The Concept of Nature is all encompassing time, space, and human perception.

A poet’s approach to time and eternity must certainly differ from a scientific one and can be found in the forth part of Emily Dickinson’s Poems: Series One.

Time passes like an eternity on the ship from Australia to England, so Tourmalin accepts the offer to put all this unused time into an account for later. When he is cashing Tourmalin’s Time Cheques, things get complicated in F. Anstey’sbook.

In a story by Andre Norton, the Russians can go back in time to unearth lost secrets. Hence, the Americans have to catch up and send Ross Murdock to Bronze Age, where he, as one of the Time Traders, has to face Russians, prehistoric men as well as aliens.

Sooner or later, we may be able to travel freely in time and settle anywhere we like – as long as we don’t interfere with history and thus become the target of a Police Operation. H. Beam Piper depicts one day in the life of a time cop.

Jason dinAlt doesn’t want to settle on Pyrrus, charmingly dubbed Deathworld. All he wants is to find out where the money went he just won in gambling, but even with his psionic skills, this does not prove to be easy in Harry Harrison’s novel.

Dorothy also finds herself stranded in a new world. Together with Ozma of Oz, she sets out to rescue the royal family of Ev from captivity. Find out about her new adventures in our dramatic reading of L. Frank Baum’s children classic.

In Henry Kuttner’s novel The Creature from Beyond Infinity arrives on Earth to colonise it and to make it a new home. But right now, a deadly plague threatens to wipe out humanity. Has he just arrived to witness the destruction of another planet?

Is Mars Habitable is not a new question. About 100 years ago, Alfred Russell Wallace published a book on this question where he sums up his research on the matter and comes to a negative conclusion.

Enjoy – and stretch your boundaries!


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