FlatWorldKnowledge Comes To You For Free

picture-112When I first started thinking about writing an objective article about a company that offered free (yeah, that’s what I said) textbooks to everyone, I thought the same thing you are right now. “RIGHT!! These jokers think I am some kind of tool! No WAY are they gonna give me my textbooks for FREE!” Guess what? THEY REALLY DO!

The founders of FlatWorldKnowledge have actually done it! Jeff Shelstad and Eric Frank have created a site that actually does completely what it says…. Something for free, no gimmicks and no high pressure sales tricks aimed at getting what few dollars I am desperately trying to hang on to. If you are looking for a textbook and they have it in their inventory, it’s really yours for free! The books are totally free for use online.

I bet you’re wondering why I was so excited to read about FlatWorldKnowledge’s nearly heretical “free” offerings. Read on







e has set a new example of entrepreneurship with their free books offers, and I expect they will make good their claim to be “flipping it all on it‘s head“. But first, I’ve got to tell you about all the services offered for their “sign up fee” which is, of course.. free.

Everyone has free access to all the books in their growing inventory of textbooks. Instructors can, using the internet as their platform for education, choose which books to use and the students can access all of them whenever and wherever they want. If the teacher wants to edit the text to better suit their needs, complete chapters can be removed, new ones added, basically allowing the instructors to create their own textbooks to suit THEIR teaching goals and their students.

Now you’re probably saying to yourself “Entrepreneurship requires someone to make money… Don is out of his gourd!” Well, I may be crazy (I just asked my wife, she agrees with you J ) but they really are poised to make money with their new take on entrepreneurship. Here’s how.

We all know we are a society based upon conveniences. The folks of FlatWorldKnowledge know this too, and had the genius to build into their free site the option for users to obtain copies of their textbooks in various formats for reasonable fees. Whether they want to listen to their text on their MP-3 player, print their own copy, or receive an actual bound copy of the book, their clientele have that option. Add to that the ability for students to ask questions about the curriculum and network their responses, and you have a groundbreaking event coming from FlatWorldKnowledge.

It is fair to note that they seem to only have about 30 books currently, but with some publicity it might grow fast.

The author is an active member of the VOIS network of professionals and twitters as @donhatton.

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