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January 27, 2004
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In this issue... scores high at

Many of you must have noticed my quick email alert yesterday to go vote for at the Cool Site of the Day website (CSOTD), because at the end of the day, we scored a whopping 9.648 out of a perfect 10.000! I looked through several years of the archives there at CSOTD, and found only 3 or 4 other websites (out of thousands featured) that have scored that well. You can see all the January winners, along with our score, here:

Cool site of the day!

We should easily get a nomination for Cool Site of the Month for January, in which case I'll soon be asking you to again go there and cast your vote for that award. Looking even further ahead, I think we've got a great chance at Cool Site of the Year for 2004, which would be, well, cool.

Thank you all for being so responsive and supportive — BookCrossers rule! (Oh, and thank you to the mystery member who nominated as a CSOTD, too! Most sites pay to be nominated, but I wasn't even aware we were going to be featured until the CSOTD admins notified me.)

global membership stats - germany on the move

Whoa — look at the move Germany made last week, claiming nearly 20% of all new members! From what I can tell, most if it was due to a large Der Spiegel article (,1518,283326,00.html) on January 19th. (Der Spiegel is a popular German weekly news magazine, similar to Time magazine in the States.)

Top 10 All-Time
USA 108,175 (52%)
CANADA 15,475 (7%)
UNITED KINGDOM 13,516 (7%)
GERMANY 10,881 (5%)
ITALY 10,116 (5%)
SPAIN 9,300 (4%)
AUSTRALIA 6,329 (3%)
PORTUGAL 2,627 (1%)
NETHERLANDS 2,448 (1%)
FRANCE 2,383 (1%)

Top 10 Last Week
USA 1,071 (42%)
GERMANY 456 (18%)
SPAIN 212 (8%)
AUSTRALIA 139 (5%)
CANADA 112 (4%)
FRANCE 51 (2%)
ITALY 36 (1%)
CHILE 24 (1%)

new t-shirts and baby-ts at supply store

Finally - dark colored BookCrossing t-shirts! I know many of you have been waiting for these for a long time, so I'm pleased to announce that the new T-shirts and Baby-Ts are now available, direct from our own Supply Store (no more CafePress middleman, so prices are lower, quality is higher, and every purchase earns you Wings).

Baby-T for the ladies Regular T-shirt for guys and gals

Click on over to our Supply Store to see all colors and styles - there's something for everyone!

7th-edition bookplate labels released

Our brand-new 7th-edition bookplate labels, featuring a reproduction of the charming Reading Dr. Seuss, an original pastel by artist Karen Barton, are now available in limited quantities:

Reading Dr. Seuss

Get them while they last! You can order them either a la carté here:

or in Release Kits with Bookmarks and Sticky-notes here:

Are you an artist? If you'd like your art to be featured on a future Bookplate series, please contact us at In exchange for the considerable exposure you'll get here and in the future on those 50,000 traveling books, we ask for only the original artwork, which we'll auction to further help support BookCrossing.

champion referrer since last newsletter


Since the last newsletter 2 weeks ago, our champion new member referrer was No-mad from Williamsport, Pennsylvania. A member since May 2002, No-mad has referred 80 new members all-time, 16 of whom joined since our last newsletter on January 16th.

You can visit his bookshelf here:

We'll be sending No-mad a $50 gift certificate from our BookCrossing Supply Store, your source for Release Kits, Bookplate Labels, Bookmarks, Sticky-notes, Stamps, and now T-Shirts!

Want to win the $50 prize next newsletter? Get busy referring people! The best tactic: release lots of books so new members will find them and join. The next-best tactic: use our Tell-a-Friend form to quickly send an email invitation to everyone you know:

superbowl sunday release mission

SSM13 (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial release) was completed last week. Read all the reports in our forum:

This week's SSM14 is based on one of one of the largest sporting events in the world — The Super Bowl — which happens this Sunday evening. So how do books and American football go together? Read on for your SSM14 assignment...

  • RELEASE ZONE: A grocery store or supermarket near you
  • RELEASE METHOD: Leave a book, preferably one related to American football, New England (Patriots), the Carolinas (Panthers), TV commercials, or professional sports, in a section of the grocery store or supermarket where pre-game party shoppers will be stocking up before the big event. Recommendations: beverage cooler, chips aisle, salsa shelves — you get the idea. Watch those security cameras, and don't get caught!
  • RELEASE TIME: This Saturday evening or Sunday morning, January 31st or February 1st, whichever is more convenient for you.

The 10 Rules of Sunday Sunset Missions:

  1. Don't talk about SSMs!
  2. Don't talk about SSMs! (for Project Mayhem fans)
  3. Be on time! You can get the exact sunset time from
  4. Label the books properly. At the minimum, this means a sticky-note on the outside making it clear that the book is FREE and NOT LOST (don't write anything on the outside to cause others alarm!), and a good, descriptive label inside the cover explaining BookCrossing and including the BCID for the book.
  5. If possible, choose a book with content appropriate to the release location.
  6. If possible, print out one of the press articles from and include it with the book (the Utne Reader or Reader's Digest articles work well).
  7. Take pictures! Those of you with digital cameras, try to take a picture of the release zone with books, upload it with your journal entry, and make a post with the journal entry link in the SSM forum at
  8. Be safe! Use your common sense, and don't do anything to endanger persons or property.
  9. Pay attention to the media the following day or two, try to note any mention of the SSM, and post such mentions to the SSM forum.
  10. And finally, have fun!

As always, Happy 'Crossing!

Ron Hornbaker
Founder and Editor,

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