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Using Public Domain Books for Creating Unique Information Products

Public Domain is a little known secret that has suddenly become very popular in the last few years. Public Domain has its origins in the USA where under certain circumstances copyright on products expires and the works then fall into the Public Domain. This means you are then free to take that product, copy it and resell it legally. The main Public Domain opportunity is with books. But Public Domain can also apply to music, film, maps, photographs, art, computer software, and other media. The bottom line is: that if a book is in the Public Domain you can freely take it and profit from it! For example you could take a book on say, dog training and turn it into a product of your own.

If the book is in the Public Domain, you simply buy it and turn it into a PDF that can be downloaded from a website after each sale. This opportunity is endless with your possibilities only limited by your imagination. A word of warning though. You still have to determine if there is a market for your product and the people in that market have the means to pay for it. But this is simple research and can be done easily. As books are the most popular Public Domain product consider how you can take a book, resell it and keep 100% of the profits??legitimately.

Copyright varies from country to country and years to years so it would be impossible to cover every eventuality here. And this is not legal advice - you must do your own due dilligence. But that said, Public Domain material offers a vast opportunity for you to produce profits in your business. Here's a very short introduction to Public Domain.

Several countries have quite strict copyright laws and in the case of books, copyright exists for the lifetime of the author plus 70 (or more) years after death. This is quite hard to track and requires a fair amount of research. But here's is an easier way to use Public Domain books. Any book published in the US before 1923 is in the Public Domain and freely available for you to use any way that you wish. And books published in the US between the years 1923 and 1963 may be in the Public Domain (and it is estimeted that 85% of them are).

Now, if you think that a book is that old it must be out of date or not of any use, then think again. Why? Because human nature just hasn't changed over the years. People still respond today as they did 100 years ago. Or even 10,000 years ago! So what books should you get interesteed in to sell in your business? It all starts with researching a niche. Once you've found your niche you'll want to have a look for a book that is in the Public Domain within that niche, that you can use. The first place to visit is www. This is an online databasse that links hundereds of boosellers, all over the globe. Also, www. is a similar resource. In this following example just look for a book that was published in the US before 1923 (that way, for sure, you will know it is in the Public Domain).

Once inside the abeBooks website, click on "Advanced Search." This will give you several search options and attribute options. For now, just use the "keyword" field and type in the phrase "dog training." You also need to type 1923 in the publication date "max" field. You're now ready to search.

So hit the "Find Now" button. At the last time of searching, the ABE site came up with 348 searches for the phrase "dog training." And those are just the ones returned for the publication years PRE-1923. Do you think between the years 1923 and 1963 a whole boatload of other titles would be found? You bet! But additional copyright searches have to be performed for works published between these dates.

For now, pre-1923 yields enough searches. Now, scroll through the searches and pick one you may think would make a good information product. Or, pick more than one and use these as bonuses for your project. Most Public Domain books are relatively inexpensive (the shipping can cost more than the book itself). When you receive the book, you need to re-produce it, in MS Word format.

And the easiest (and quickest) way to do this is to get the entire book scanned. There are many good companies that will do this for you. If the book is text only, you could re-type it, but this can be extremely time-consuming. When you have your Public Domain work in Word format, you can now do whatever you like with it.

This means you can change the title, change the name of the author, add a foreword, take a chapter out, add a chapter, add/delete any text you like, add an image - the possibilities are limitless. You can do whatever you like. Anything that makes your finished product a more sellable item. You could even add your own affiliate links in there.

And, if you make "substantial" (nobody's ever define "substantial") changes to the original work, you can even add your own copyright notice to your newly "derived" product. It's a good idea to reformat the whole text of the original. To give it that "modern" look (more readable).

Of course, you don't have to make any changes at all if you don't want to. But it's advisable. Here's another option, your "derived" product needn't be a downloadable ebook at all. It could be turned into: a hard copy book a manual an EClass an Audio tape or a CD a DVD a home study course. And much more Let your imagination run riot and see what you can use Public Domain for.

Peter Woodhead specializes in Public Domain. He has created dozens of products derived from the Public Domain. You can learn more about Public Domain by going to:

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