I just wanted to know whether downloading books free would be allowed in Islam.
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
There is a website www.ebooksclub.org which offers free ebooks. the downloads are totally free. I just wanted to know whether downloading books free would be allowed in Islam since i am not sure whether any rules are being broken.
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Download free books
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Islam and the Shariah Law protects the rights of the person or company who develops or invents a product and his right to benefit from that product in a just way. If some person or company has strived to invent or create something, then it is their right to market and benefit from that product. If someone steals that product and uses it without the permission of the company or person who invented it, then it would be deemed illegal in Islamic Law, and would indeed be considered a sin in the Sight of Allah Subhanah.
But if the one who invented the product and holds its legal copyright allows and gives their permission for others to use or utilize it for free, there is absolutely no harm in utilizing and benefiting from such free usage.
Your Question: I just wanted to know whether downloading books free would be allowed in Islam
If the one who holds the legal copyright for the books consents or gives their permission for their works to be downloaded free of charge from their nominated website, and provided the contents of the book do not violate the laws of Shariah (propagation of shirk, disbelief, fahisha, indecency, etc.), there is no harm if one wishes to download their works.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your brother and well wisher in Islam,