There are writers who feel that piracy is not a concern to them, or that piracy is beneficial. I am not one of that ilk.
How does it help me --or you-- that Disney and Norton place paid adverts on BookZa on pages illegally offering my books to anyone who wants to download them free?
I own the copyright. I did not give permission for BookZa to create illegal versions of my titles or to publish and distribute my titles.
A friend gave me a heads-up about BookZa. Here is one of the many pages sharing my stuff http://bookza.org/g/Mate%20Forced
I was able to copy the illegal links on the page, but not the Google-placed advertisement.
Now, what is happening to tax revenues as a result of this piracy?
The pirate probably isn't paying taxes. Is the income from Norton and Disney and other advertisers paid to Google greater that the income would be if income taxes were paid at the individual rates? I have no way of knowing.
There is another site that is in my opinion a pirate site. It is Mobilism.org and although it posts a copyright page, it pays uploaders in WRZ and it does not (appear to me to) ban prolific uploaders no matter how many takedown notices are sent in.
Here's the link to the page of someone who apparently uploads an average of 4 ebooks every day, and appears to have uploaded material encouraging people to infringe the copyrights of more than TWO THOUSAND AND SEVEN HUNDRED works.
The ebooks that KellyKing29 has allegedly uploaded are hosted on TusFiles and on Hulkload.
Here is mobilism's "policy". In my opinion, they would not be in business if they enforced it or followed it.
Last modified: 15 April 2013
Mobilism does not condone, allow or permit copyrighted content to be uploaded to our servers. Please ensure you read and understand this policy before uploading to Mobilism servers or filing a copyright infringement notice.
Mobilism accepts DMCA infringement notices for copyrighted material.
To file an infringement notice for a file that is not hosted on Mobilism servers (subdomains ending in .mobilism.org), please follow the copyright infringement process of the site the file is hosted on. Mobilism does not have access to remove files on external services and therefore may not respond to copyright infringement notices relating to files on external services.
Mobilism may remove pages that link to copyrighted material. To file a copyright infringement notice with Mobilism, you must provide written communication using one of two methods set forth below. By filing a copyright infringement notice you understand and accept if you materially misrepresent that a product or activity is infringing on your copyright, you will be liable for damages including costs and attorney fees.
Option One, Email: Your notice must contain all of the following to be accepted:
Mobilism will generally handle complaints within 48 hours of the complaint being received. The contact details for filing a copyright infringement notice can be found on our contact us page.
Option Two, Registering as a Developer/Author/Other copyright holder or representitive: Alternatively to filing a copyright complaint by email, you may register on the forum and send a private message (PM) to the Section Head of the forum where the infringing content was posted. Section heads are listed on the index under the title of each section. Your first notice must include all of the following to be accepted:
Once your identity is confirmed, subsequent emails are only required to have a link to the infringing content and the statement of the last bulletpoint. Messaging section heads directly will generally result in much faster removal than emailing us.
Any users of Mobilism services who repeatedly upload copyrighted material to Mobilism servers may have a permanent ban placed on their account if they are issued with more than two infringement notices.
Piracy is big business, but not for the majority of authors who are being ripped off. Think what they could be earning if Google, PayPal, file hosting sites, major businesses that advertise on pirate sites etc had morals.
This is back to the BookZa page.
Apparently AMAZON is involved with BookZa.ReplyDelete
Grateful thieves can donate to the pirate site using Amazon gift vouchers.
Hi, I don't read romance novels, but I'm quite passionate about copyright. That's how I came across this post. I infringe copyright on principle (and often go through a lot of effort to do so), and I'd like to tell you why.ReplyDelete
First and foremost I'd like to point out what copyright (and patents, incidentally) actually is: it is a deliberate infringement on a persons natural right to copy things in their possession. This is key, because it's where concepts like fair use come from.
For example, if I have a chair that I like, it is well within my rights to make a duplicate of that chair with my own hands. I can give it away, or sell it at a profit, no problem. Likewise with my favorite plate or my kid's toy car. I can copy my neighbor's fence post design and tell everyone I know how to make it.
This is a very good thing, as it allows for professional authors and artists and musicians and the like, which means we are flush with great things to read and listen to and look at for relatively low costs.
However, modern copyright law has lost sight of its purpose. The intention of copyright is not to make creative people rich (though that would certainly be a happy side effect). The intention of copyright is to make more creative content available to the public.
For a number of reasons I won't go into, I don't believe copyright is serving its intended purpose any longer thanks primarily to companies like Disney and our lovely friends in Congress.
So, I infringe copyright on principle. I've looked up a number of studies on whether or not it hurts authors, and the results are very inconclusive. Anecdotal evidence from authors suggests it is potentially very helpful to authors. Publisher Baen Books has a free library of current works specifically because of this. It's worth checking out at Eric Flint's (the Baen Free Library editor) essays for their reasoning.
Instead of paying for books, I donate to authors who give their work away for free. Occasionally I'll buy directly from an author, or I'll buy a Baen book. But for the most part I donate.
Since I don't read romance, this won't affect you directly, but I can certainly understand why you'd be offended by it. I just wanted to point out that there is another side to the issue that copyright holders always ignore. It's copyright holders who infringe the rights of others first. In principle and to a degree it's a good thing, but it's worth bearing in mind.
Add to that the fact that there is little to no evidence that copyright infringement hurts the people I least want to hurt (people just like you), and I'm comfortable with my position.
Maybe you need to be asking yourself why people don't feel the need to pay money for your books in a truly free market (i.e. one free of government coercion). Could it be that you're not a very talented author? Being honest with yourself is a big virtueReplyDelete
I understand the response that an author such as yourself might have to people illegally downloading your books. But I think this is an emotional response on your part and not based on logic. There are two points. #1) In a world with lightning fast always-on internet connections and with the file size of the typical ebook being under one megabyte, if one person on the planet has an unprotected copy of your book then a million do. The notion that fighting piracy is anything short of trying move the ocean one tablespoon at a time is laughable. (And if one person on the planet has a DRM'd version of your book and knows how to google 'removing DRM,' then again, a million people have your book.) It might help to vent, but the planet will keep spinning the direction it does and orbiting the sun until it stops of its own accord. Point #2) There is somewhere in the neighborhood of 6.5 billion people on the planet. A surprising number of those want to write a book themselves. Of that subset, a surpising number will succeed. Your real fight as an author — though you don't yet realize it — is not with how many ever people you believe have read your book illegally. Your fight is with the 6.49999999999999999 billion people who have never read your book. (Never heard of your book. Don't know who you are. Could care less.) Your job as an author is to write a great book and then get it into as many hands and, hopefully, in front of as many eyes, as you can. And you don't care how that happens. There is a saying that the opposite of love isn't hate, it's indifference. I'd like to offer a paraphrase: The opposite of publishing sucess isn't piracy, it's obscurity.ReplyDelete
Thank you for your comments. You make an interesting point. Once upon a time, of course, exerting what you call a natural right to copy something would involve considerable expenditure of time and effort... almost proportionate to the time and effort exerted by the original creator.
That would be your chair example.
I think that you are mistaken about the purpose of copyright, though. It's not a question of "MORE" as in multiple copies of the same thing. It is a question of making it possible for creative people to spend MORE TIME on greater creative output and the GREATER QUALITY of their creative output.
If authors, musicians, photographers are not given a fair opportunity to make an income from their creative work, they will have to learn a living some other way, which will mean that they produce LESS creative work.
I don't believe that the majority of authors give away their books because they aspire to be buskers and receive your charity.
I think they give away books because they have been told that obscurity is their enemy, and that a free read will attract fans who will subsequently buy the authors' other books.
Commerce is supposed to rely on a willing seller and a willing buyer. If the buyer does not want to meet the seller's price, the buyer either bargains or leaves. He does not steal what he cannot afford.
if you made a chair and put it on a roadside stand for sale, with a sign saying you wanted $20 for it, would you be okay if I took your chair and donated $1 and told you that you do good work, and I like you? :-)
Congratulations on an apt choice of pseudonym.
Hi, MIchael D Mullins,ReplyDelete
Your points are well made. I have been aware of your #1 point since 2003 that if one person has an e-copy of my book, then they have the ability to distribute it to millions.
That is why there is only one short story of mine that was ever legally released as an e-book. My other contracts were print-only.
However, I disagree with you about the point of fighting piracy. Under the law, one has to assert and protect ones copyrights, and if one does not do so, one risks losing the protection.
It is a ludicrous battle. Canute ordered the tide to cease and desist from coming in, not because he was a fool, but to make a point to his courtiers.
I disagree with your idea of an author's job. It's not a job if one is not paid. It's not a contract if only one party to the contract adheres to the terms.
If writing is not rewarding, if society does not give me an incentive to write, there are many other ways I can spend my time.
Contrary to what you obviously (or apparently) believe, artists, musicans, authors, etc do not owe you free entertainment.
All the best,
I disagree with your analogy to a chair put on a roadside stand for sale: if you steal a chair then the original owner cannot use it anymore.
I think you missed the real difference between a chair and a novel. Ignore the material parts of them, paper and wood. We talk about an intellectual work in the novel and the chair - the story and the graphic design.
The difference lies in the amount of effort needed to use the intellectual work (after it has been copied/stolen, choose a word that fits you better) in relation to the amount of work that has been inserted to the intellectual work by its creator:
If you want to steal/copy a chair design that you saw at your neighbour then you need much investment in order to have a practical chair.
If you want to steal/copy a novel that you found on the internet then you need only a computer with a book reader.
If you want to steal/copy a recipe that your neighbour explained you then you don't even need a computer because you can write the recipe down on a paper.
The question is whether recipe authors deserve most protection, due to an easy copy procedure of their work ...
Thank you for your comment. I do not understand your disagreement with my analogy which centered on a person paying what they wished for a created work instead of the asking price.
I agree with you that the example involved theft of something original that took the creator a considerable amount of time to create.
If I understand your comment, you are concerned about the amount of difficulty involved in stealing the something that has been created by someone else.
You seem to think that it is less heinous to "steal" a novel in ebook form than it is to steal a chair.
I was not, in my answer to Bigjeff5, talking about knock-off items. I was not talking about making an Arne Jacobsen lookalike, presenting it as an Arne Jacobsen, and trying to sell it for $20.
That would have been copyright infringement.
I was talking about the sort of person who knows perfectly well that the seller wants $20 for an item that is marked For Sale, and who takes the item and leaves a lot less than the price ... and then boasts about it.
Stealing does not become less so because it is easy to do, providing one is wealthy and successful enough to own a computer and fast internet connection.
On the other hand, your advocacy for protections for recipe authors is most interesting. i wonder how many recipes are in the public domain. How many variations of a recipe would be classified as Fair Use, and which would be considered derivative, and which would be judged as transformative.
A book of recipes is one thing. There, one has the written and illustrated expression of a number of culinary ideas. Some creativity went into the choices and the presentation.
As for a list of ingredients and a list of activities... would one call those ideas? facts? Of course, some recipes are patented, such as the recipe for Coca-Cola. That's a different matter from your neighbor's special way of preparing hot dogs which he is happy to explain and even dictate.
I just came across this article online and wondered what people here think of it. Perhaps the piracy problem is that publishers aren't handling the e-book problem "correctly" (as this article discusses)ReplyDelete