Kevin Beynon

Ebooks & Technology

I'm Kevin Beynon.


working to enable people to learn, share and expand their skills, knowledge and understanding, mainly through the use of technology

is a thing, then that's what I do.

Over the years I've discovered that I'm someone who must practice what they preach.

I've worked in the charity sector for over 20 years. Firstly, because it was a job. Later, because I wasn't spending my time lining someone else's pockets, and hopefully helping society in some way.

My decision to live by my principles particularly affects my behaviour as a consumer. For example, it's no good deciding I don't like how Amazon are exploiting their employees or avoiding taxes, if I still buy from their shops and use their services. So, I boycott them.

Protesting against DRM and still buying locked-down products is an asshole move. So, I don't.

I launched Libreture in 2017, an ebook cloud library where readers store and track their digital reading, and discover DRM-free bookshops.

Here's what I'm currently reading.


Store your ebooks, track your reading, and discover new favourites with Libreture: Dropbox meets Goodreads for DRM-free ebook fans!

To support independent authors more directly, I opened my own Special Edition ebookshop in 2020. Scarlet Ferret sells DRM-free ebooks and magazines. Every ebook includes digital extras, and I pay 80% of the revenue to the authors.

Scarlet Ferret

DRM-free Special Edition ebooks with extras, and digital magazines.

To help readers make the switch to ebooks, I created The Epubizer. It includes guides on choosing the right ebook format, being aware of DRM, and how to get your ebooks on to your device.

The Epubizer

Thinking of buying ebooks from independent online bookshops? Need help getting started? The Epubizer is here to help.

Ebooks: finding them, buying them, reading them, and storing them safely are all parts of my businesses. They're all branches of the same tree.

Of course, I'm in a privileged position of being white, male and living in the UK. It's easier for me to make these decisions when I don't have to worry about simply surviving day-to-day. That's where education, consumer rights and technology come in - and that's where I concentrate my efforts.

Access to Technology

We are living through a period of transition, where people are being forced to use the web to access essential services and those who cannot, or choose not to, are left behind.

The UK Government's Digital by Default project created a two-tier society. People with access to technology and the education and means to use it have a clear advantage over those who do not. Many may struggle with access or with usage due to financial, disability, or other social, physical and mental inhibitors.

Growing up, I owned a computer that allowed me to programme as well as play games, now the computer games market is dominated by consoles that only require the press of a button to play. The interfaces between human and computer are now mediated by companies, technologies and practices that do not allow experimentation, trial & error, or simple play.

While computers have become more powerful, they have also become more limited in their uses. They are now predominantly media and app players for the companies that sell them - a sophisticated evolution of the printer & cartridge model monetised so successfully by printer manufacturers; the printer being the loss leader for the cartridge consumable market that derives the true profit.

The range of devices, knowledge & skills, and the ability to tinker are all reduced in a capitalist dream of device-consumer tie-in where the owner doesn't own a thing.

Through my consultancy, Charity Technology, I support small charities to get a grip on their technology, and make the most of the tools out there without breaking the bank..

Charity Technology

The small consultancy for small charities with big ambitions. With Charity Technology, you can have a digital expert on call for less than the cost of a decent plumber. Specialising in E-learning, CRM, and Web & SEO consultancy for the third-sector.


I first worked in e-learning in 1999.

Our audience didn't have regular and consistent access to the web, so our media of choice was the CD-ROM. It contained HTML content with VR examples and situations to enhance the learning and context. Over a decade later, with almost ubiquitous internet access for the intended audience, I continue to deliver content via HTML; an open and universal language that can be accessed on almost every web-capable device without additional plug-ins or third-party software.

I could have chosen to create native apps. But apps need to be tweaked for each and every device, they eventually become inaccessible as devices become obsolete. The skills to create them are expensive, and access to them can be limited by gatekeepers and middle-men: the app stores.

Delivering learning content should always be based on the lowest common denominator of platform availability. The web browser is an universal platform that can deliver that availability. Content based on open, common and free mark-up always wins over plug-ins, closed and proprietary formats that limit creation and consumption.

My passion, it would seem, is accessibility. Accessibility in the universal, holistic sense. Easy ways to create content and access to it for all, while ensuring that creators make a good living.

That's why what I do is all about access to, use of, and income from knowledge. It's the reason I started TechBox, as part of Charity Technology. Techbox is a technology KnowledgeBank, resources repository, and learning site for those in small charities.


Confused by all the technology jargon and tools you need to run your charity's digital side? Charity TechBox gives you the tools and knowledge to set up and manage your digital resources without the jargon!

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