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Monday, 1 November 2010

My book has been pirated!

I suppose it was inevitable, but it is pretty disappointing as a writer to find that "The Lady's Slipper", which is barely out of nappies - still in its pristine hardback edition in the uk - has been copied and is now available worldwide for people to download free from the internet. I the writer, can do absolutely nothing about it, and will of course receive no royalties from them at all.

When I got on the 'get books for free' site, I was astonished to find I could download lots of just-released pirated books, and yes, it looks tempting to a bookaholic like me to have all the latest books available for nothing.....

Of course in the end, if people download the books, (which are probably of varying quality) and they therefore don't sell in an official version, then publishers will not be publishing them, or supporting their writers.

Those that do get books this way for free are slowly strangling the publishing industry. But we've seen this before, haven't we, with the music industry.

I have to say it is frustrating when the US Kindle edition is still a few weeks off, but also I suppose its flattering that someone could be bothered to copy and upload it.

Tell you the name of the site? You must be kidding.


  1. As holders of the publication rights, you and publisher should be able to bring a lawsuit against the pirates, depending on where in the world the website is hosted. The battle may not be worth the effort it would take, given that the pirates will often simply move on to other websites.

    I'm sorry to hear that your work has been taken like this. I can only imagine that it feels like a violation.

  2. The same thing happened to mine. Send the website a copyright infringement notice -- Scribd has a good template you can use at

  3. This is really depressing :( I think you should ask them to take it down although as Nevets said it might not be worth it.

    So not fair. Although I have to say that I know some commentators say that those who download things for free often go onto actually buy the things themselves if they do like them - there is evidence for this in the music biz - so maybe you will get some money from this eventually, I hope :(

  4. Depressing, isn't it? All the pundits said it wouldn't happen to books because the book buying public is a different demographic to the music buying one. Clearly the book-downloading-for-free demographic is exactly the same as the music-etc one.

  5. Alis, I think with books there if a percentage of book-readers who want to download for free, but I think the real driving force is students in school. Students will take anything for free and rationalize it.

  6. Hello everyone. Thanks Fiction Chick for your advice, I've taken it. Unfortunately as Nevets says the website is abroad so no chance of sueing without a few million behind you. Also, as he says they just move along somewhere else. Interesting what you say Becki about some people going on to buy the real thing.

  7. This is really depressing, Dee. But I feel that the book-buying public - the real ones - will want to buy your bok the proper way, so you may be adding to your readership rather than losing readers. Let's hope so, anyway.

  8. Hi Dee

    Suffered the same thing last year and sent the link to Pan Mac to alert them. The site has been shut down since but it's a problem we're all going to have to deal with, philosophically at our end, and more realistically at the publisher's end.
    I think as long as ebook prices continue to be as high or if not higher than a paperback, in these tough times, we're going to see this more and more.

    PS: Could you post a link to the pirate site on the MNW Google groups so that we can check if our own books are on there? I'm going to start posting pirate sites on the group as and when I discover them, just to keep everyone in the loop - call it an pirate-ebook monitoring service!

  9. Be happy!
    Where I come from, being pirated is a matter of honor. After all, someone thinks your stuff is worth reading!