Imagine this scenario. You work in an office. You’ve been given a project that you have worked hard on. Long hours have been spent perfecting it. The project is something you’re proud of, but when you make the presentation you find out someone else presented it earlier.
The one you got paper cuts over. The one that cost you in time loss–passed up dates, missed events, etc. You don’t know whether to cry or kill somebody.
A coworker pulls you to the side and say that Company X over in State Y posted your same findings on the internet. Anyone can read it. You click on the link and go straight to YOUR project. The same cover and the same contents. You didn’t provide anyone with this information.
How about this scenario? You go into a high-end shop and see an outfit you want. It costs more than YOU think it’s worth so while no one is looking, you take it. After all, the designer can make another one. He or she probably has made millions off of it already.
Has your jaw dropped yet? Are you thinking you’d NEVER do this?
Well, have you ever downloaded or read an author’s book online without paying for it? I’m not referring to the legitimate sites like Instafreebie, Freebooksy, or even BookFunnel. I’ve used these sites. Freebooksy sends you to the free book on Amazon. Instafreebie and BookFunnel take your information and then will email you with a MOBI or even a pdf that’s watermarked courtesy of the author (you even get email from the author because you’re now on his or her list). No problem with those.
I’m talking about websites that post a copy of an author’s book without permission. I stumbled upon one over the weekend (I won’t mention it here to keep others from downloading illegal copies). I Googled the title of my latest book, Worth the Fight, and found a site saying that I could read the full book online. I went to the site and there was my book. I didn’t have to do a search. No information was obtained from me. Clicking on the pages I discovered it was the final version of the book I uploaded to Kindle Direct Publishing, not an Advanced Reader Copy. I haven’t even given away a digital copy of my book.
Well, after a lot of anger, I got my ducks in a row. I sent a DMCA notification to the website and demanded my book be removed. As of the writing of this post, my book is still on the site. I have investigated to find out who the hosting provider is and have sent an abuse notification to them as well. My hope is that enough authors do this. If we go to the top, this nonsense has to stop. But if we sit on our hands declaring there’s nothing we can do, nothing will be done.
If you’re an author who wants this information, check out my Facebook page. From there, send me a Private Message. I won’t post the offending site publicly.
This blatant act of thievery will not stop me from providing my stories to readers though. I’ll keep writing and publishing. I’ll take whatever safeguards are necessary to protect my work. And if you’re interested, you can still find my book on Amazon.com for the ridiculously low price of 99 cents!