[sword-devel] Often-requested yet never-available Bibles

Karl Kleinpaste karl at kleinpaste.org
Fri Jul 24 13:25:02 MST 2009

I sure would like to understand why we can't seem to get traction with
publishers regarding Bible versions that people actually want.

Yes, we have ESV, NET, and KJV, and maybe perhaps someday possibly NASB
though I doubt it.  Yes, I know we have a lot of other English Bibles.
But other than ESV, NET, and sometimes KJV, they're not the Bibles
people want.

I have the Bibles people want -- I have dozens of hidden Bible modules
that I've generated on my own, using content from various web Bible
sites.  I can't give them to anybody; I hardly even make the scripts to
do so available any more.  Minutes ago, sword-support got a request for
Good News Bible, from ABS.  It's not the first time it's been asked for,
in one forum or another.  And the requester is exactly right: ABS makes
GNB available in multiple places on the web for free.  I've tried asking
ABS in the past about access to CEV for production into a Sword module,
using the contact channels they themselves specify, and got back nothing
in response but dead air.  (Oddly, GNB is one I never generated.)

The "module requests" wiki page lists umpty-dozen Bibles.  I'm
personally responsible for about half a dozen of those listings.  Yet
publishers do not even give the bottom-level respect of merely
*acknowledging* the requests I've made for access to texts.  NIV is the
one that I used to hear about the most, so I have asked IBS twice via
their web page and once via snail mail -- very formal, very proper, very
precise, clearly asking for nothing in return and being willing to do
the conversion ourselves, using both email and snail mail addresses that
they specify -- and yet nothing.  Ten days ago, I sent a request
regarding RSV & NRSV that was proper, formal, respectful, positively
gracious...and yet no one has even reacted to the request.

It's very depressing to see people give us praise on the one hand for
the quality of the programs we write, yet chastise us on the other hand
(even in friendly ways) for not having the translations they really
want.  I can't tell you the number of times I've mentioned Sword Project
apps in public forums, and gotten the response, "But you don't have NIV
and NASB -- I paid for them for eSword and I don't want to lose my
investment."  If we could put eSword modules to use in Sword Project
apps, that would be an 80% solution, because (for no good reason I can
fathom) eSword has managed to convince *ALL* the publishers of interest
to publish in that format.  But I think we all know where that idea gets

Why can't we in this project get that kind of publisher respect?  What
is it about the possibility of Sword module production that so repulses

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