Yay! I have a computer again! :) I hate not having a computer. First of all, some of my best friends live in it. Second, I couldn't write for a week. I did write in a notebook when I had time, but I still missed my computer. Anyway, it's good to be back in internetland.
I wanted to talk about piracy today. And not the hot swashbuckling kind. I'm pretty sure every knows what piracy is, but just in case...
Definition: The unauthorized reproduction or use of a copyrighted book, recording, television program, patented invention, trademarked product, etc.
We've all heard of it. It's getting to be a bigger problem now days and bottom line? It sucks. That's really all there is to it. Every industry has this problem. Movies, music and now books. People losing thousands of dollars when their product is downloaded for free.
Over the past week, a few author friends of mine found their books on pirating sites. People have been downloading their books for free. Some have had their books on the sites for months and had no idea. One girl had her new release downloaded 100 times. Another, 1000 times. There was another author who had a series of 3 e-books and they were downloaded 10,000 times. Do you have any idea how much money she lost because of this site? I'm sick for this girl.
We as authors work SO hard to get our books into the best shape possible. We work even harder when we secure an agent or publisher or decide to self-publish our books. If you found out your book was being downloaded for free on some pirating site, I think you'd be devastated. I know I would. And I'm sure most publishers fight to get them taken down, but once they find the book, the damage has already been done.
Now, there's a difference between getting a book on Amazon for free vs a pirating site. Amazon places books for free sometimes. I'm not sure if the author has any say in it, (you authors that have done this, let me know) but most of the time it's a marketing tool. Place your book for free and you have a lot of people interested. Then with other books in the series, people will be willing to buy it to find out what happens next.
Pirating takes a copyrighted book and puts it on the internet illegally. It needs to stop. I wish there was more we could do about it, and I'm sure it will just get worse. But keep in mind when you come across a pirating site, (some can be very legit sounding) think about the author that worked so hard on his/her books. Buy it from a known source. Barnes and Noble, Amazon, or your local bookstore. Hopefully book piracy will diminish a little if we keep our eyes open.
Any thoughts on this? Have you ever had your material on a piracy site and found about about it later?